Sam Farber, Kitchen Tool Maker Extraordinaire, Passes Away at 88

The founder of Oxo leaves behind a legacy that touches home cooks across America
OXO

The kitchens of many home cooks just wouldn't be the same today without Sam Farber, inventor of Oxo kitchen tools. Farber passed away on Sunday, June 23 at the age of 88 in East Meadow, N.Y.

Oxo's high-quality wares are sold just about everywhere now, easily found in most big-box retail stores including Target, Bed, Bath & Beyond, and Kmart.

In the late 1980s, the Oxo brand of kitchen tools was created, and their soft plasticized grips and handles set them apart from the competition, making them cushy to use and friendly to home cooks, especially those with joint problems like Farber's wife Betsey, whose arthritis prompted Farber to design a more ergonomic vegetable peeler.

But Oxo products can even be found in professional restaurant kitchens — some chefs swear by their sturdy Oxo salad-spinners that have withstood years of daily abuse, for example. It is probably one of the few consumer-oriented brands also respected by professionals.

Oxo was not Farber's first foray into housewares. In 1960, he started a company called Copco, which manufactured enameled cast-iron pots and pans, reminiscent of Le Creuset. Farber sold Copco in 1982.

Farber is survived by his wife, two sons, two stepchildren, four granddaughters, and three step-granddaughters.

Will Budiaman is the Recipe editor at The Daily Meal. Follow him on Twitter @WillBudiaman.

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