Dorothy Gerber was having difficulty preparing baby food for her own child. She suggested to her husband to produce baby food at his Michigan based Fremont Canning Company after their pediatrician suggested straining food for their daughter Sally. Employees at the canning company began asking for samples for their own children and the rest is history!
For years it was a source of speculation — who is that adorable Gerber baby? Theories ranged from Elizabeth Taylor to Humphrey Bogart. But really, artist Dorothy Hope Smith drew the charcoal sketch of mystery novelist and retired English teacher Ann Turner Cook.
In 1928 the company introduced its first line of strained foods: peas, prunes, carrots, spinach and beef vegetable soup. Today, Gerber offers over 200 products for babies at every developmental stage!
In 2002, they funded and conducted the Feeding Infants and Toddlers Study (FITS). Surveying approximately 3,000 infants and toddlers 4 to 24 months old, it was the first study of this size and specifically focused on the understanding of how young children were really eating.
While they technically weren’t the first to invent baby food (that honor belongs to a pharmacist named Henri Nestlé) they were the very first to invent baby cereal in 1972.
In 1963, Gerber took freshness to a whole new level. They developed the first food safety cap — the first tamper-evident packaging of its kind. In 1977 they initiated the "use-by" dating system on baby food jars for product quality assurance.
If you were around in 1974, you may remember the time Gerber thought it’d be a great idea to make baby food for the single adult. Both gross and slightly depressing, Gerber 'Singles' were pulled from shelves fairly quickly as most adults weren’t too keen on eating pureed meat if they still had all of their teeth intact.
Well, temporarily. If your ferret is resisting regular ferret feeds due to illness, many ferret owners resort to syringe-feeding the little guys Gerber’s Chicken baby food. While it isn’t recommended as a diet replacement, it can help your little guy gain his strength back safely!