Team Cone donates over $105,000 to Saint Jude after 2019 fundraising campaign

Ocala- and Tallahassee-based beer distributor Cone Distributing (Team Cone) combined forces with community members throughout the company’s 22-county footprint to give $105,500 to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. 

“This was effort was truly from the team,” says Team Cone founder and president Douglas Cone, Jr.  “Hats off to our team and all they did to raise these funds. No event was organized and mandated. Each time we raised money, the effort started with one teammate saying, ‘I want to help.’ This truly was a team effort in 22 counties, and we could not have done it without our community and retail partners helping our teammates.”

2019 marks the eleventh year that Team Cone has hosted events and community activities throughout the 22 counties they serve to make a large donation to the hospital.  Team Cone’s business partners host events, collect funds, make donations, or work to support the company’s annual drive for St. Jude.

Planning and progress are already underway for Team Cone’s 2020 St. Jude fundraisers.  The company’s goal in 2020 is to continue the company’s legacy of community contribution by continually giving back with caring.

Team Cone Saint Jude 2019












Team Cone’s Saint Jude event leaders joined with the company’s leadership team to present the 2019 Saint Jude Children’s Research Hospital donation check. Team Cone teammates (from left) Jim Anderson, Charlie Feagin, Wayne Johnson, Matt Goldsmith, Douglas Cone, Jr., Ty Chatterton, Charlie Ingrilli, Steve Hayes, and Jason Baas (Steve Beckwith not pictured) all organized, executed, or worked fundraising events for Team Cone.


Team Cone Logo No Background




About Cone Distributing
Founded by Douglas P. Cone, Jr. in 1985, Cone Distributing (Team Cone) began doing business by selling five brands of beer in four rural counties. Two years later, the company began expanding and has not stopped since, building the largest geographic footprint in Florida for a beer distributor. Today Team Cone sells beer from over 40 suppliers in 22 counties from a state-of-the-art facility in Ocala and a warehouse in Tallahassee. Cone Distributing’s goal is to operate a World Class company, distinguishing itself by doing the Right Thing the Right Way All the Time.

Team Cone celebrates 34 years in the beer industry

Team Cone is proud to celebrate 34 years of selling World Class products from the best in the business. 

On May 20th, 1985, a bright-eyed Doug Cone opened Cone Distributing, Inc. for the first time and began selling five beers in four counties of rural Florida.

With the help of his family, Cone had purchased the assets of an existing distributor and opened the doors of the facility at 500 Northwest 27th Avenue in Ocala as Cone Distributing, Inc.  With hard work and dedication, Cone Distributing began growing into the business it is today.  Team Cone has purchased distribution territory and has been awarded selling rights from breweries across the world. To accommodate a growing team and territory, Cone Distributing built a 160,000 square-foot warehouse in Ocala in 2011. From small roots to now serving almost a third of the counties in Florida, Cone Distributing’s trucks and cars can be seen all around those same counties and in front of the fine establishments of the customers they serve.

Although Cone Distributing, known to many as Team Cone, now sells beer, energy drinks, soda, fermented spirits, and distilled spirits from over 40 suppliers in 22 counties, the company is proud to maintain and uphold the Core Values it always has. The values that drive the organization can be seen in many facets of the operation – from excellence in serving customers to giving back to the community it serves. Team Cone would not have grown and continue to grow without World Class people and products in the market every day.

Team Cone thanks the teammates that have helped grow the business and customers that continue to look to Team Cone for World Class products and service – for the last 34 years and onward into the future.


Vintage beer truck with Mr. Cone
Team Cone founder, Douglas P. Cone, in front of beer truck circa 1985.
Team Cone trucks, circa 1985
Team Cone truck with kegs
While the trucks and the beers have changed a little over time, Team Cone’s commitment to excellence remains the same.

Team Cone Human Resources Department helps fill over 5,000 meals for Ocala charity

On Tuesday, December 18th, Team Cone Human Resources Department along with professionals from the Ocala Human Resource Management Association held their annual Christmas luncheon at Team Cone’s hospitality room.  The point of this luncheon was not to simply celebrate the year’s successes but to feed those in need in the community.


Together, the human resources professionals teamed up with The Pack Shack organization were able to fill 5,265 meals of cheesy rice and vegetables for donation to and distribution by Brother’s Keeper of Ocala.


“This event was a great opportunity to live our company Core Value of Giving Back With Caring,” said Team Cone H.R. Director J.J. Jarrell. “This event was a fun way to come together with the H.R. community in Ocala and give of our time.  We had fun and we did something to help our neighbors.”











Ocala Human Resource Management Association

The Ocala Human Resource Management Association is a nonprofit organization of human resource professionals from the Marion County community. Affiliated with the Society for Human Resource Management, an international organization of more than 180,000, OHRMA provides the information you need to make today’s decisions and to formulate and implement effective Human Resource Management programs. OHRMA helps expand professional competence, keeps members informed of federal and state legislative actions, and maintains standards of excellence in the Human Resource Management field.


Team Cone Logo No Background

About Cone Distributing
Founded by Douglas P. Cone, Jr. in 1985, Cone Distributing (Team Cone) began business with selling five brands of beer in four rural counties. Less than two years later, the company began expanding territory and suppliers and has not stopped since, building the largest geographic footprint in the state for a Florida beer distributor. Today Team Cone sells beer from over 40 suppliers in 22 Florida counties from a state-of-the-art facility in Ocala and a facility in Tallahassee. Cone Distributing’s goal is to operate a World Class company, distinguishing itself by doing the Right Thing the Right Way All the Time.

Every day is audit day at Team Cone

“Every day is audit day” is more than a mantra at Team Cone, it is a way of life.  Team Cone does not see an audit as a negative event, but a chance to positively illustrate excellence to suppliers, co-workers, retailers, and retail consumers.  Such a bold philosophy can’t just be said, it must be lived and tested. Living by this mantra has paid dividends for Team Cone – the company consistently scores in the upper tiers of several of the industry’s toughest audits.  Because Team Cone works with World Class suppliers, they insist on the type of World Class service that Team Cone provides.


Some of the audits that Team Cone has passed recently and continues to be ready for include:Loading up a perfect package

Sweetwater Brewing Company


SweetWater Brewing Quality Assurance Audit: SweetWater Brewing of Atlanta gives 24 hours’ notice that they will be in Team Cone’s market to visit mostly draft accounts.  This one-day audit encompasses about twenty accounts looking for out-of-date beer and monitoring draft line cleanliness.  SweetWater’s auditors look for how regularly draft lines are cleaned and de-stoned as well as checking bottle dates to ensure proper stock rotation is taking place.  

Team Cone has passed each and every SweetWater Brewing Quality Assurance Audit with a 100% score, including a recent surprise audit in August 2017.

New Belgium Brewing logo


New Belgium Brewing Quality Assurance Audit:  New Belgium Brewing’s audit is known to be one of the toughest audits distributors face, and also one of the longer ones.  New Belgium Brewing sends auditors into the market unescorted for thirty days.

These auditors will audit both on-premise (bars & restaurants) and off-premise (package, grocery, & convenience stores) accounts the distributor sells beer to, and they will score the distributor based on findings.  New Belgium’s auditors are known for being thorough, looking through singles racks, bottle displays, and backstock to find out-of-date bottles.  New Belgium will stop a delivery truck to check the temperature of kegs of beer being transported, as well as inspecting draft lines for cleanliness and regular care.

New Belgium makes it known that most distributors fail the first audit and are given a chance to correct any issues.

Team Cone has passed every New Belgium Brewing Quality Audit since the first audit in 2015, including a perfect 100% in the first year.  Team Cone has received a 100% score since the first audit, posting only one less-than-perfect audit score of 96%.


Coors Cans in warehouse

MillerCoors Brewing Quality Assurance Audit:  MillerCoors Brewing Company’s audit is a challenging and multi-faceted audit. This supplier examines almost every aspect of Cone Distributing’s business.  The audit begins with a market inspection.  Two MillerCoors auditors visit ten off premise accounts and five on premise accounts chosen at random.  The auditors are looking for beer that is out of code and/or out of rotation, as well as unclean tap faucets at draft accounts.

The next phase of a MillerCoors audit involves inspecting our warehouse to ensure that we are cleaning, stacking, and refrigerating properly.  The auditors will walk the warehouse and will then search through company records to verify that sales, delivery, merchandising, and repack  personnel are current on their code date training.

Team Cone has passed every MillerCoors audit and has recently scored in the top percentage of MillerCoors distributors, despite MillerCoors beginning a more challenging audit program in 2017.  Where 70% is passing, Team Cone earned a 95.45% Quality Index Score and a 91% on Quality Systems.  Out of 1,022 cases of beer examined, less than 3 of those cases were out of date.



AIB Logo

American Institute of Baking (AIB) Annual Audit:  The American Institute of Baking Audit is an audit that we undergo because we sell Red Bull and since a large customer of ours classifies Red Bull as food, we must undergo an outside inspection to grade us as a food producer.  Since we are not a food producer, the inspector narrows his scope to the parts of theinspection that do apply.

Team Cone maintenance

This audit is known to be the toughest audit in the industry when it comes to cleanliness and procedures.  Every chemical used for cleaning has to be on an approved list and verified by the auditor. The Warehouse and Maintenance Teams have made books of procedures and the Corporate Safety Manager has documented our procedures for warehouse safety. The AIB inspector goes through our warehouse with a fine-tooth comb looking for anything that could interfere with food safety.  Any spider web or insect material in the building is an automatic failure. The auditor is so specific that he examines our mopping procedures in case of a spill (it’s left to right, just so you know).


Because of the efforts of everyone in the warehouse, especially the Director of Maintenance and the Maintenance Team, Team Cone doesn’t just pass this rigorous audit, but has consistently scored in the top tier of all inspections.  A passing score is an 800 and the top score is 950.  Team Cone has progressively improved to be just ten points shy of a perfect score in 2017.


While an auditor does not show up every day of the year, Team Cone rests in the confidence that if they did, the Team would be prepared.  After all, the Team cannot scramble to get ready for each and every audit, rushing around in the days prior to a visit.  As the saying goes, “if it is not written down, then it did not happen” and details matter.  While an audit may not come each day, they have to be kept in mind by Team members paying a keen eye to small details – rotating beers and checking dates during every sales call, making sure that each beer is accounted for while building displays or merchadising, making every delivery with accuracy, and accounting for all warehouse procedures.  That is doing The Right Thing, The Right Way, All the Time — and it shows.