< About Our History Explore This Section Menu Our Values Our History Our Family of Companies Expand/collapse Hormel Foods International Expand/collapse China U.S. Exports Canada Philippines South Korea Australia Panama Japan Brazil Applegate Farms, LLC Dan’s Prize, Inc. Fontanini Foods, LLC Burke Marketing Corporation Cidade do Sol Columbus Manufacturing Jennie-O Turkey Store Justin’s, LLC Sadler’s Smokehouse MegaMex Foods, LLC Leadership Expand/collapse Management Team Expand/collapse Jim Snee Jacinth Smiley Deanna Brady Jeff Baker Mark Coffey PJ Connor Jeff Frank Steve Lykken Luis Marconi Swen Neufeldt Mark Ourada Janet Hogan Pierre Lilly Lori Marco Kevin Myers, PhD Wendy Watkins Scott Aakre Nathan Annis Richard Carlson Jen Ehresmann John Forsythe Jeff Grev Fred Halvin Tony Hoffman Tyler Hulsebus Gary Jamison Brian Johnson Paul Kuehneman Leslie Lee Mark Morey Pat Schwab Lisa Selk Annemarie Vaupel Mark Vaupel Steve Venenga Natosha Walsh Clint Walters David Weber Eldon Quam Board of Directors Awards and Recognition Contact Us Expand/collapse Brand Collaboration Request Hormel Foods 45-Day Satisfaction Guarantee Consent Request Donation Guidelines Donation Request Newsletter Sign-Up Inclusion and Diversity Hormel Foods is a Fortune 500 company that manufactures and markets high-quality, brand-name food and meat products globally. While we are over 130 years old, we are just getting started. Choose an era Select 1891–1925 1926–1950 1950–1975 1976–2000 2000–2017 1891–1925 1891 A Legacy is Born George A. Hormel established Geo. A. Hormel & Co. in Austin, Minn. 1898 Valuing Service The company’s long tradition of supporting the U.S. military and its veterans began when three employees enlisted with the Minnesota National Guard to serve in the Spanish-American War. George Hormel promised full benefits and jobs upon their return. 1901 Setting Sale Following impressive sales of fresh pork products, the first sales branch opened in Minneapolis, Minn. 1911 Ad-ing On The first national advertising for the company appeared in Ladies Home Journal. 1926–1950 1926 Ham in a Can Geo. A. Hormel & Co. developed the world’s first canned ham. Jay C. and George A. Hormel 1927-1928 Passing the Torch At age 67, George Hormel retired from handling day-to-day operations but continued to serve as chief executive officer. His son, Jay C. Hormel, was named acting president. Geo. A. Hormel & Co. became a public company in 1928. 1935-1941 Master of Innovation The transfer of leadership to Jay C. Hormel brought with it a daring new set of ideas for management, products and advertising. Legacy products Dinty Moore® beef stew, Hormel® chili and SPAM® brand were introduced. 1938 Family Feeling Employees were brought to the forefront of focus with the establishment of guaranteed annual wages, a joint-earnings plan and an employee profit sharing trust. World War II Serving Our Troops With the passing of the Lend-Lease Act of 1941, Hormel Foods shipped up to 15 million cans of meat per week overseas, most of which were products from the iconic SPAM® brand. By 1944, more than 90 percent of the canned foods were shipped for government use. 1941 and 1942 Giving Back The Hormel Foundation was created in 1941. The Hormel Institute followed the next year. 1946 Hormel Girls In a bold marketing move, Jay C. Hormel established the Hormel Girls, a traveling women’s drum-and-bugle corps, to promote Geo. A. Hormel & Co. products. 1947 New Leader After World War II, the company saw its first leader from outside the Hormel family, Tim Corey. 1950–1975 1955 Quality Reigns Under the leadership of Bob Gray and then Tommy Thompson, the company shifted its focus from high-volume production to market-driven, innovative products. 1959-1963 Big Time Iconic products such as Hormel®Little Sizzlers® pork sausage and Hormel®Cure 81® hams were introduced during this era. Meanwhile, the SPAM® brand had produced its billionth can. 1969 Expanding Presence Jim Holton led the company during an era of unprecedented investments and ideas. The company expanded its international presence and built 10 domestic facilities. The decision was also made to build a flagship plant in Austin, Minn., further solidifying the company’s small-town roots. 1973 Label Conscious Hormel Foods became the first meatpacking company to include nutritional labels on meat products. 1976–2000 1976 Money Talks Annual sales topped $1 billion for the first time, largely in part from the strength of the company’s iconic brands. 1979 New Era The company was guided by Dick Knowlton through a whirlwind of intense industry competition and innovation. 1982 Here to Stay A new 1,089,000-square-foot plant – equivalent to approximately 23 football fields – opened in Austin, Minn. The $100 million building featured state-of-the-art processing equipment and was the largest investment in company history. 1990 New York, New York The company began trading on the New York Stock Exchange in 1990 and announced its seventh two-for-one stock split since its inauguration as a publicly traded entity. 1993 Name Changer Geo. A. Hormel & Co. was officially renamed Hormel Foods Corporation to more accurately reflect the company’s presence in the industry. Joel Johnson capitalized on this change and guided the company with a marketing perspective, incorporating new technologies such as brand-specific websites. 2000–2017 2000-2013 Growing Family Under the leadership of Jeff Ettinger, the company made more than 10 acquisitions, including SKIPPY® peanut butter; CytoSport, Inc., maker of Muscle Milk® products; and Applegate Farms, LLC., maker of natural and organic meats. It also crafted a joint venture that resulted in MegaMex Foods, LLC. 2011 Changing Lives Hormel Foods introduced SPAMMY®, a fortified, shelf-stable turkey spread, to help address childhood malnutrition throughout the world. The program has touched 8,300 families and more than 25 million servings have been distributed since 2011. 2012 Sure Can The SPAM® brand celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2012 with the help of the company’s first-ever campaign spokescharacter, Sir Can-A-Lot®. 2014 Critical Nourishment Hormel Foods announced a partnership with the Cancer Nutrition Consortium to provide cancer patients with nutritional offerings for their specific, individual needs during treatment. 2015 Our Future Jim Snee was named president and chief operating officer. 2016 125 Years Old and Just Getting Started The company celebrated its 125th anniversary in 2016, along with the grand opening of the new SPAM® Museum in downtown Austin, Minn. Meanwhile, Jeff Ettinger, chairman of the board and chief executive officer, was named one of the World’s Best CEOs by Barron’s. 2017 Bem-vindo! Hormel Foods expanded its international portfolio into South America with the acquisition of Cidade do Sol in Brazil.