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The History of Hellmann's Mayonnaise

When he was 14 years old, Richard Hellmann worked as an apprentice at his local food market in Germany. He emigrated to the United States in the early 1900s and settled in New York, where he met his wife Margaret, the daughter of two deli owners. Richard and Margaret opened Hellmann’s Delicatessen in 1913. In 1920, Richard began creating his own mayonnaise from scratch and selling it at their Manhattan shop. In the early 1920s, he sold two versions of the recipe. To distinguish between them, Richard put a blue ribbon on one. The ribbon version became so popular that Richard created the now-iconic “Blue Ribbon” label and placed it on larger glass jars to meet demand. In 1927, Postum Foods acquired Hellmann’s. Despite also acquiring the West Coast mayonnaise brand Best Foods a few years later, the company continued producing both products due to Hellmann’s massive popularity. Hellmann’s went on to become one of the best-selling and most well-known mayonnaise brands in the United States. Then in the 1960s, the brand entered the European market. In the 1970s, Hellmann’s was introduced in five new countries around the world — Portugal, Spain, Brazil, Argentina, and Colombia. The well-known taglines “Bring out the Hellmann’s” and “Bring out the best” were both coined in 1987. In 2000, Unilever acquired Hellmann’s. In 2014, new squeeze-bottle packaging was introduced alongside the traditonal jar-style packaging. In 2016, the brand even launched a vegan, gluten-free version of their beloved product called Hellmann’s Vegan Dressing & Spread! In 2020, Hellmann's transitioned to using food-safe recycled plastic packaging, and in 2021, the company launched a Make Taste, Not Waste campaign in the United States to help address the growing food waste problem. A year later, a new product called Spicy Mayonnaise was launched. Today, Hellmann’s is one of the most well-known and beloved mayonnaise brands in America as well as in many countries all around the world.

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