Mm! Mm! Good! Sound familiar? It ought to for its been a Campbell Soup slogan since the 1930s, when the company entered radio sponsorship. In 1869, a fruit merchant, Joseph Campbell, and an icebox manufacturer, Abraham Anderson, shook hands in Camden, N.J., to form a business that one day became one of the most recognized in the world and a symbol of Americana: the Campbell Soup Company. Originally called the Joseph A. Campbell Preserve Company, it produced canned vegetables, jellies, soups, etc. In 1897, major milestones occurred when Arthur Dorrance, general manager, reluctantly hired his 24-year-old nephew, Dr. John Dorrance, a chemist trained in Europe. He was so determined to join Campbell he agreed to pay for lab equipment and accepted a token salary of $7.50 per week. He made his mark on history that year with the invention of condensed soup, which lowered costs of packaging, shipping and storage. A 10 ounce can for 10 cents versus 30 cents for a 32 ounce can. The idea became so hot, the company adopted soup as its middle name. Advertising helped. In 1904, the cherubic Campbell kids were introduced for trolley car advertisements. Womens magazines boasted 21 varieties at 10 cents. National Geographic had full page ads for years for one variety each month but always included 21 varieties at 10 cents a can. One of the earlier soups was Ox Tail Soup made with meaty oxtail joints, vegetables and nourishing barley. Using condensed soup in recipes originated in a cookbook published in 1916. After Wold War II, Campbells home economists cooked up Green Bean Casserole and Glorified Chicken classic dishes today. A company executive, watching Cornell University play football in new red and white uniforms, was so impressed by the colors he convinced the company to adopt the colors for new labels on Campbells Soup containers. Some of the most popular varieties have been enjoyed by generations: Tomato, introduced in 1897, and Cream of Mushroom and Chicken Noodle in 1934. Combined, Americans consume about 2.5 millions bowls of these three soups each year. The company has evolved to fit a changing marketplace also. The condensed line has been expanded to include contemporary varieties like Cream of Broccoli, a line of Healthy Request, Chunky, Home Cooking, and Ready to Serve soups. Thirty-two ingredients combine to make Campbells Vegetable Soup. The number of brand names under the Campbell label now includes Pepperidge Farm breads, cookies and crackers, Franco American gravies and pastas, V8 vegetable juices, Swanson broths and Godiva Chocolates. Other Campbell tag lines have found their way into popular culture including: Wow! I couldve had a V8, Uh-oh SpaghettiOs and Pepperidge Farms Remembers. Campbell products are available in practically every country in the world.


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While many of the products Americans know are offered internationally, regional varieties like Watercress and Duck Gizzard Soup in China and Cream of Chili Poblano Soup in Mexico, have been introduced to respond to cultural preferences. Even though the companys foods have found their way into homes thousands of miles from the Camden, N.J., headquarters, they still bear the name of the man who made his mark selling soup from a horse-drawn wagon: Joseph Campbell.