LeRoy Pennysaver & News - page 11

I’ve been on the phone with
the folks at Jell-O to see if there
will be any changes with the
Jell-O trademark since Kraft
Foods was purchased by H.J.
Heinz lastyear. Fromwhat Ihave
learned, the Jell-O trademark is
still governed byKraft, so there
will be no changes at this time.
The new company, Kraft Heinz
Cowill be the third largest food
and beverage company inNorth
American and the fifth largest
worldwide. Itwillgenerateabout
$28 billion of annual revenue
from suchbrands asOscarMay-
er, Philadelphia, Velveeta,Max-
well as Kraft cheese and Heinz
ketchup. Berkshire Hathaway
Inc, and a Brazilian investment
firm, known as 3G Capital,
bought Heinz in 2013, and they
own 51 % of Kraft Heinz and
control sixof the11board seats,
which includes Berkshire chair-
man, Warren Buffett. What all
of this means is still a mystery.
Therehavebeena lot of changes
in the past year. Themarketing
firm, Hunter Associates inNew
York, that we used toworkwith
are no longer affiliated with
coupleof folks at Jell-O. Weare
alsosupposed tobeworkingwith
Ketchum, anadvertisingcompa-
ny inChicago,buthavenotheard
from them yet. I have learned
that theKraftarchives inMorton
Grove, outside of Chicago, is no
longer staffed, and thedoors are
literally closed. I had visited the
archives on two occasions and
had become well acquainted
with their archivist, but she is
no longerwith the company. So
things are changing. This past
weekend, theHistorical Society
took a bus trip to Pittsburgh
and visited the Heinz History
Center and had a great time.
Talkingwith one of our guides,
he mentioned that everyone in
Pittsburghwonders if theHeinz
officeswillbemoved toChicago,
where theKraftofficesare locat-
ed. And I havewondered if the
Kraft offices inChicagowill be
moved toPittsburgh. Only time
will tell.
ThestoryofHeinz - -ketchup,
pickles, soup and all the other
foods with the Heinz label is
very interesting. Twelveyear-old
Henry JohnHeinz began selling
vegetablesathishouse inSharps-
burgh,Pennsylvania. In1869, by
the time he was twenty-five he
first with horseradish and later
withmany other products. At a
timewhenmany foodprocessing
companies were adulterating
their products with chemicals
topure food. Itwas sopure, that
he began putting up his sauces
and pickles in glass bottles so
the purity of the product could
be seen. The iconic label, was
based on the shape of the Penn-
sylvania “keystone” state shape
and was the first trademark of
the company. The idea of the
Heinz “57 varieties, came about
whenHeinzwasona trip inNew
YorkCity, andheadmiredashoe
sign that advertised 21 different
styles of shoes. It made Heinz
count all the products he had
under theHeinz label,andhesaid
that he hadwell over 57, and he
liked the sound of 57 - -in fact
it is told that he believed that 57
was a lucky number, so the “57
Varieties” remainedpart of their
Particularly interesting, was a
story thatBrendaBeal,whowas
on our bus told. She grew up
in the Lockport –Medina area,
andmany of the farmers in that
areawere growing tomatoes for
Heinz. The Heinz Company
regulated thequalityof the toma-
toes, by restricting the farmers
to only buy and grow tomatoes
from “Heinz tomato seeds.”
And sure enough, on exhibit in
the Heinz History Center was a
brown paper seed bag, printed
Few people remember that
Starkist Tuna was also a Heinz
product but Charlie the Tuna as
well asMorris theCatwerepart
of Heinz production in Pitts-
burgh. Although 9-Lives cat
food and Starkist were sold off,
Charlie theTuna is still apart of
thePittsburgh story.
Now that Heinz , the largest
tomato foodprocessingcompany
and Kraft, the owner of Jell-O
arepart of the same team, I can’t
helpbutwonder if theywillbring
back the1960sJell-Oflavor - - - -
“seasoned tomato.”
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