THE J. M. SMUCKER COMPANY was founded in 1897 by Jerome Monroe Smucker in Orville, Ohio. Smucker’s is a manufacturer of jam, peanut butter, beverages, shortening, ice cream toppings, oils, and other products.
Jerome Smucker (born in Orrville, Ohio on December 5, 1858) began by selling apple cider and apple butter on the back of his horse-drawn wagon door to door. In 1897 he built a cider mill in Orrville. The company became incorporated in 1921. The company expanded its operations in 1935, hoping to increase demand. The expansion included opening a fruit-processing facility in the state of Washington. In 1942 national distribution began with the shipment of fruit spreads to Los Angeles, California, and Smucker also added ice cream to its product line. Its apple butter became part of American soldiers’ rations while serving overseas in World War II. The company went public in 1959, issuing over 165,000 common shares. The stock was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1965.
In the 1960s the J.M. Smucker Company sought to further diversify its product line. The firm began to sell ketchup in 1963, and Kellogg’s began to use Smucker’s jam in its Pop-Tarts the following year. In 1965, the J.M. Smucker Company began to manufacture peanut butter. By the late 1980s, Smuckers was producing and marketing its products internationally, first in Canada and then in Australia. In 1982, Smucker’s purchased the Magic Shell product line, a squeezable topping that hardens on ice cream.
The company has appeared on Fortune magazine’s annual listing of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in the United States since 1998, ranking number one in 2004. Expansion continued into the 2000s. It acquired JIF and Crisco in 2002, purchased the Folgers coffee brand division from Procter & Gamble in 2008, and Big Heart Pet Brands in 2015.
Since 1962 Smucker has marketed its products with the slogan “With a name like Smucker’s, it has to be good!” created by Lois Wyse, an advertising executive, author, and columnist.
The J.M. Smucker Company is a member of the ONE HUNDRED YEAR CLUB OF THE WESTERN RESERVE.