Buddeez, Inc., a family-owned household products innovator whose operations are based in Union and Wentzville, has been invited by Walmart to present their Made in the USA products at an open call event Wednesday, June 28, at the world’s largest retailer in Bentonville, Ark.

More than 500 businesses from across the nation will present products.

Known for creating unique and fun products such as the “Bread Buddy,” Buddeez will participate in open call for the fourth year in a row, taking advantage of the opportunity to further expand its relationship with the company’s largest customer.

Thousands apply to participate each year.

Buddeez, which has about 150 employees between its production facilities in Union and business offices in Wentzville, has been in business for 25 years and been a Walmart vendor since 1994.

While it has a long history with the retailer, the company noted that its participation in open call has enabled it to add to its product portfolio as it innovates new products that help it gain entry into other departments.

Over the past three years, Buddeez has had four products selected via open call, including a beverage dispenser, a cake cover, the Bread Buddy bread keeper, and a storage container for bolts. This year, it is pitching a party tray with deeper/wider compartments, a dipper container that fits most any existing dip container and a specially-designed cover that keeps everything in place.

It will also pitch a commercial storage tote that is water-resistant, featuring more commercially designed hinges and survived a 400-500 pound drop test without getting so much as a crack.

About Open Call

Now in its fourth year, Walmart’s Open Call is one way in which Walmart continues to invest in American jobs by accelerating the growth of U.S. manufacturing.

Attendees this year represent 48 states, District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

States with some of the largest representation include California, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and Wisconsin.

With some companies pitching multiple products, more than 750 meetings have been scheduled with Walmart buyers representing a broad range of product categories.

From secret sauces and pocket-sized hair gel, to photographic mouse pads and bowls designed to keep cereal crisp, this year’s diversity of new innovative products represent a broad range of categories such as food and beverages, home décor and apparel.

While some businesses are larger, many are “kitchen-table” companies, vying for a chance to work with the world’s largest retailer and earn a place on the shelf.