America’s Favorite Pickle is Made in Michigan’s Thumb
OK, technically Vlasic Pickles, located in Imlay City, is at the extreme southern portion of the Thumb. Area growers supply cucumbers for America’s #1 pickle and scores of workers work at the plant and distribution.
Vlasic Pickles Marketing Genus
In 1974 the pickle company had a bit of marketing coup with the introduction of the stork mascot. This baby-delivering stork is linked to the old story that pregnant women have an appetite for pickles. Vlasic marketed themselves as; “The pickle pregnant women crave…after all, who’s a better pickle expert?”. The spectacled bird had a voice like Groucho Marx and held the pickle like a cigar, taking a bite and uttering the punch line, “Now that’s the best tasting pickle I ever heard!”.
Vlasic’s Cute and Snarky Commercials
Amazingly, Madison Avenue loved the Vlasic spokes bird and added the stork to the Madison Avenue Advertising Walk of Fame. The iconic stork is now alongside other mascots like the Pillsbury Doughboy and Mr. Peanut. In the days of social media, the iconic stork took on the name of Jovny and can be found on YouTube.
Frank Vlasic moved to America in 1912. Just after World War II Frank’s son grandson Bob built its first plant in Imlay City, Michigan. Over the next 20 years, the family grew Vlasic into America’s number one pickle.
Vlasic makes its famous pickles and over 100 other products in Imlay City Michigan The plant produces more than 150 million jars of pickle products annually. Vlasic is one of Lapeer County’s largest employers.
Conagra Brands Buys Pinnacle Foods
On October 26, 2018, Pinnacle Foods was acquired by Conagra Brands (CGA). Pinnacle Foods’ (PF), stock ceased trading on the New York Stock Exchange before the market opened on that date. Pinnacle Foods offered many well-known brands such as Duncan Hines, Bird’s Eye, Log Cabin, Mrs. Butterworth’s and Vlasic Pickles.
Deal Creates Second Largest Frozen Food Company
The cash-and-stock deal valued at about $10.9 billion. Analysts say that this deal creates the second-largest U.S. frozen food company behind Nestle and strengthens Conagra’s snack food.
Included Vlasic Pickles and Wise Cracking Stork
Vlasic Pickle conducts operations in Imlay City and purchases cucumbers and peppers from area farmers in Michigan’s Thumb region. In 2013, Pinnacle made a $14 million facility expansion which resulted in the creation of 29 full-time and 500 seasonal jobs. The Imlay City plant produces more than 150 million jars of pickle products annually. Vlasic is one of Lapeer County’s largest employers.
Related Michigan Food Links
- Understated Michigan Food Brands We Love
- Unique Michigan Foods You Have to Try
- Michigan’s Own Ice Cream Wars
- Upper Thumb Radio Stations