The Shipping Project

As the holidays are coming, many people are making a list and checking it twice.  For those loved ones who have moved away from their hometown, they often would like a “taste of home” as a gift.  We have researched, long and hard, on how to ship Monical’s pizza.  So here is the story.

In order for us to ship our Oven-Ready (frozen) pizzas, they have to be manufactured in a USDA-approved facility. To date we haven’t found a manufacturer who can make our pizzas to our standards. We make them in our restaurants and can maintain quality that way, but aren’t able to ship them due to the USDA restriction. We continue to work on this and are making some progress, but don’t yet have a satisfactory solution to the issue.

The biggest challenge to manufacturing the Oven-Ready pizzas on a large scale was the quality.  Monical’s dough process requires two days with multiple “hands on” or manual processes.  This “handmade” process insures that our doughs (the crust), the heart of our product, maintain the real “Monical’s” texture and taste.

After researching the possibility of producing USDA-approved frozen pizzas ourselves and discovering that it would be cost prohibitive, we began searching for an existing manufacturer.  With only one exception every manufacturer we contacted wanted a guarantee of production of units far in excess of our estimates.  We first met with this manufacturer in July of 2010 to tour their facility and discuss a potential partnership with them manufacturing our frozen products.  After some time spent reviewing and revising a proposed agreement, we were able to begin the production of our first test batch of frozen pizzas in September 2010.  Our dough production procedures were quite a bit different than the manufacturer was accustomed to and several modifications to our procedures needed to be made to fit into their production process.  Five different product batches were produced in September without achieving the desired crust quality.  We continued to work with the manufacturer to achieve our product quality goal.  Monical’s started with smaller test batches.  5-10 pizzas went well.  So we moved to 50 pizzas.  Still successful.  However when we made 300 pizzas, the production run uncovered glitches in the process.  Because the finished product did not meet our quality standards we decided not to sell the product and instead donated those pizzas to a local food pantry.  To date we have not been able to develop a process that will produce the infamous Monical’s crunch, flavor and aroma.  And isn’t that what you want?  So we will continue to investigate but wanted to be sure our loyal customers knew the “real” story.

60 Comments

  1. I have moved out west and MISS MONICAL’S pizza so MUCH!!!! Can’t wait until we can order and have it shipped to AZ! 🙂

    • Unfortunately, we are no closer to shipping than we were when this blog post was posted. But if you know of someone who still lives in a Monical’s area, we know of no restrictions to someone purchasing our Oven-Ready (frozen) Pizzas and shipping them themselves! Good luck!

  2. I’m ordering the dressing (which I use on my own frozen pizza), and would be interested in ordering a t-shirt of some kind. I will definitely stay in touch for ordering Monical’s frozen pizza when you can send to Texas!

    • We’re so glad you were able to order our Sweet & Tart dressing, unfortunately, we can not ship our Oven-Ready (frozen) Pizzas. I do have a bit of good news though, we are working on getting new t-shirts in our online store in the coming months…you should keep an eye out on the merchandise section of our website! http://www.monicals.com/merchandise/

  3. From. Peoria. Love Love the Monical’s. Delight! I live in. Florida and somehow they can’t make a good pizza , let alone one like. Monicals!!!! Hope to know when your pizza is available . So glad that you are waiting to ensure the quality , it will be worth the wait ! Thank you for all those delicious memories. ,Waiting Somewhat Patiently. Doug. Dixon

    • Mr Dixon,
      Unfortunately, we have still made no progress with shipping due to the USDA restrictions. We don’t believe there is any restriction, however, to you (or someone you know) purchasing our Oven-Ready (frozen) Pizzas and shipping them yourself, so long as they are properly packaged (dry ice is best) to maintain food safety!

  4. Ever since I was a child Monicals has been my favorite pizza in the world! Anytime I got to choose dinner, I chose Monicals! I have so many cherished memories at Monicals, from my 5th birthday party to my high school graduation party. I recently moved to Florida and I have yet to find any decent pizza. I follow Monicals on Facebook and my mouth waters everytime they post a picture. You mentioned that family still in the area could ship the pizzas themselves. So my question is how would they purchase dry-ice and properly ship the pizzas? I have seriously considered doing this, but I’m not sure exactly how to do it.

    • Ms. Quigley, We would recommend checking first with the local shippers (FedEx, UPS or USPS) to see what their recommendations are for packaging and shipping frozen food! They may know who sells dry ice in that area! (I know some grocery stores do sell it because I saw a sign at our local grocery store when they started carrying it!) Good luck! 🙂

  5. Dear Monical’s,
    Here’s an idea. In lieu of shipping your frozen pizzas, is it possible to purchase some of your excellent sauce?

  6. Several of my children and other family members have moved out of state and crave Monicals pizza like crazy. Our closest Monicals is in Canton ,il would they have the frozen pizzas to ship? What i would give to open a franchise in the orlando, fla area.

    • Unfortunately, we not able to ship our Oven-Ready (frozen) Pizzas. In order for us to ship our them, they have to be manufactured in a USDA-approved facility. To date we haven’t found a manufacturer who can make our pizzas to our standards. We make them in our restaurants and can maintain quality that way, but aren’t able to ship those due to the USDA restriction. Additionally, at this time, our Canton location does not carry the Oven-Ready (frozen) Pizzas.

    • Unfortunately, we can not. In order for us to ship our them, they have to be manufactured in a USDA-approved facility. To date we haven’t found a manufacturer who can make our pizzas to our standards. We make them in our restaurants and can maintain quality that way, but aren’t able to ship those due to the USDA restriction. However, we know of no restrictions to you (or someone you know) purchasing and shipping them yourselves following the shippers guidelines for shipping frozen food!

  7. Please start selling franchises in Florida!! There are thousands of transplants here for Central Illinois and we so miss Monicals!! We were just there for the weekend and the highlight of our entire trip was a family p[leaser with an extra large pizza!! We (4 of us) ate every bite!!

  8. why can’t we order the creamy Italian dressing that is served at Monicals?? That is my favorite and I would order it all the time. I know several people here in Tampa that have also said the same thing.
    I understand that it is made for Monicals by American Foods..
    Please let us know if we can start ordering that p[product.
    Thanks

    • Although you can not purchase the Creamy Italian as a pre-packaged dressing, you can order extra of the 5oz cup of it next time you place an order. The price for the 5oz cup varies by location, but as of now, they are 75¢ at corporate locations!

      • I see now that half of your message was hidden and after I replied, I saw that you are in Tampa…sorry about that! At the moment, we have no plans of selling the Creamy Italian as packaged dressing.

  9. I to moved to Florida and my kids and I want Monicals pizza also. I have ordered the dressing and even sent it to others please send me a pizza, lol no really please start sending them or open up this area

    • Unfortunately, we have bad news…we can not ship our pizzas, and we have no current plans to open in FL.

  10. I’m in Fl too and if a location opened near me, I would go there at least once a week, lol! I know there are no plans to open any here, but just had to add that business would do well here :).

  11. I’m craving Monicals hard right now as I’m pregnant so I feel like you should expand. Open up and share with others who have no idea what they are missing!! Only because it’s hard to drive 1700 miles to get a pizza!!! PLEASE CONSIDER IT!!!

    • We really do wish we could be everywhere! We are opening in the St Louis area this spring, we’re not sure where you’re at, but we know we’re not looking 1700 miles away right now. 🙁

  12. PLEASE please please come to Nashville TN – or build a Monical’s hotel near your most southern location. I loveeee the pizza so much!!! Getting ready to make another 5 hour trip to Olney, IL. (Sighhhh) for my beloved Monicals. Yes, just for a Monical’s pizza. I’ll buy several – eat constantly on the way back to Nashville, then hope there is enough to freeze until my next trip.

  13. Miss Monical’s Pizza! Kansas is void of any good pizza. Help please open Monicals in Kansas. I now have some hope as I see one has opened in Missouri.

  14. Come to North Carolina! Lots of Illinois ex-pats here and we all miss you, Monical’s! You would love the weather. We have the mountains and the beach, but no Monical’s. 🙁

  15. How about now – 2017!!!

    Can you PLEASE pretty please with sugar on top ship some pies put of state?

    I grew up with Monicals pizza and miss it like crazy.

    Thanks you 🙂

    • Unfortunately, we are still not able to ship. We do believe that you (or someone you know back home) can purchase our Oven-Ready (frozen) Pizzas and ship them yourselves so long as you follow the shippers guidelines for shipping frozen food!

  16. Why don’t you guys ship by order..I mean we would have to pre-order them by at least a week..maybe that would make the quality production better so they are not making 300 pizzas at a time maybe 50 at a time.,

  17. Luann in Las Vegas, I grew up enjoying fabulous Monica’s and miss it so much. Is there any future plans of shipping? I have much family living out here now and I think the thing we miss the most out here it not enjoying our favorite pizza!

  18. Are there any plans for kentucky locations, I love your pizza and would travel within a reasonable distance but everything is still too far north.

  19. Hello,

    Curious about your franchise information – why are franchises not open to residents in the states that say it is prohibited? Say, If I were interested in opening a franchise location and live in Colorado why is there a stipulation about that?

    • Currently we are concentrating our efforts in developing the states of Missouri, Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana. If you would like to provide your information to us, we can keep it on file and contact you if we expand beyond those four states.

  20. I see the note saying that your out-of-this-world creamy Italian dressing isn’t available online like your sweet-and-tart is. Why is one available but the other isn’t? If it’s because you obtain it from another manufacturer? If so, would it be possible to get the brand name so we can run out and get some? Thanks from the Alamo City in Texas!

    • We have looked in to having retail packages of our Creamy Italian Dressing, but for the time being, the demand for it is not high enough to put in to production. 🙁

  21. What a shame! The creamy Italian is so good. I know I’d purchase it often! Would you recommend any other brands that are of similar taste? Thanks

  22. I also live in Colorado but grew up in central Illinois. There is nothing resembling Monical’s Pizza out here and I believe there are a lot of central Illinois transplants out here that would love a Monicals!

  23. I’d like to use your dressing at my wedding in December here in Arizona. I’m wondering when the dressing expires. Should I wait to order it? Or will it keep until December if I order it now?

    • Sounds awesome! Our regular Sweet & Tart Dressing generally expires about 4-6 months out, our Sweet & Tart Light on the other had has a much shorter shelf life and expires about 1-3 months out! Most shipments arrive about a week after ordering, we would recommend placing your order about 3-4 weeks before the wedding to allow enough time to receive it, and to have the furthest shelf life you can get! Congrats on the wedding! 🙂

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