Oscar Mayer's history in Madison dates back to 1919.
1873 -- Oscar F. Mayer, 14, arrives in the United States from Bavaria
1883 -- Mayer and brothers Gottfried and Max lease a failing Chicago meat market
1911 -- The company incorporates as "Oscar F. Mayer & Bro."
1919 -- The corporate name is changed to Oscar Mayer & Co.
1919 -- Oscar G. Mayer purchases Farmers' Co-operative Packing Co. in Madison for $300,000
1924 -- Pre-sliced bacon introduced
1928 -- Oscar F. Mayer is elected chairman; Oscar G. Mayer is elected president
1933 -- Skinless wiener production begins.
1936 -- The Wienermobile and Little Oscar make their first appearances; the "Yellow Band" trademark is introduced
1941 -- Oscar Mayer creates a research division
1944 -- Oscar Mayer engineers create an automatic wiener bander; Kartridg Pak Co. is established
1946 -- The Oscar Mayer Foundation is established
1948 -- The company markets its first self-service meat package: shingled bacon in a cellophane wrapper
1948 -- The distinctive Oscar Mayer logo is created
1949 -- Smokie Links developed; Saran tube "chub'' package introduced for braunschweiger and other sandwich spreads.
1950 -- Slice Pak, the first vacuum-sealed package for meat products, is introduced
1953 -- The skinless wiener linking and stripping device is developed
1955 -- Oscar F. Mayer dies at 95; Oscar G. Mayer elected chairman; Oscar G. Mayer Jr. elected president
1957 -- The company moves its headquarters from Chicago to Madison
1960 -- Six distribution centers open nationally, 29 more will open within 10 years; vacuum-sealed packaging for wieners, links and bacon introduced
1961 -- Oscar Mayer ventures into international business with the purchase of controling interest in Venezolana Empacadora, a Venezuelan meat processor
1962 -- Vacuum-sealed saran packages for bacon and Slice Pak items are introduced; continuous wiener production begins in Madison; Richard Trentlage pens the Oscar Mayer wiener jingle, which begins running on radio stations in 1963 ("Oh, I wish I were an Oscar Mayer wiener/That is what I'd truly like to be/'Cause if I were an Oscar Mayer wiener/Everyone would be in love with me")
1964 -- "Serve 'N Seal" luncheon meat packages are introduced
1965 -- Oscar G. Mayer dies at age 76
1966 -- Oscar G. Mayer Jr. is elected chairman; P. Goff Beach is elected president
1968 -- The company begins prime-time television advertising, sponsoring the "Gentle Ben" show; the Madison-based ice division is sold
1970 -- Scientific Protein Laboratories is created in Waunakee to manufacture phamaceutical and chemical products from byproducts of processing operations
1970 -- Oscar Mayer acquires C.F. Claussen and Sons Inc., a Chicago pickle company
1971 -- Common stock is listed on New York Stock Exchange; continuous large sausage processing is developed
1972 -- Oscar Mayer purchases 25 percent interest in Prima Meat Packers, Ltd., Tokyo; the "back window" bacon package is introduced
1973 -- P. Goff Beach is elected chairman, Robert M. Bolz, president, and Oscar G. Mayer, chairman of executive committee; Universal Product Code and nutrition data is put on labels
1974 -- The continuous loaf process is developed; the company's Claussen Pickle plant opens in Fullerton, California
1975 -- Sales reach $1 billion
1976 -- Oscar Mayer acquires a minority interest in the Spanish meat firm, General De Mataderos, which is renamed Oscar Mayer, S.A.
1977 -- The Oscar Mayer Foundation passes the $10-million mark in charitable contributions since 1946
1977 -- Oscar G. Mayer Jr. retires; Jerry M. Hiegel is elected president, and Harold M. Mayer, chairman of executive committee
1978 -- Hog slaughter ends at Madison plant; 600 positions are cut
1979 -- Oscar Mayer acquires the Louis Rich Company
1981 -- Oscar Mayer and its subsidiaries are purchased by General Foods for $464.6 million; company becomes Oscar Mayer Foods Corp.; hog slaughtering ends at Davenport, Iowa, plant
March 1983 -- Oscar Mayer Foods Corp. sells Scientific Protein Laboratories for $5.75 million
April 1983 -- The company sells Kartridg Pak Company
August 1983 -- Oscar Mayer closes its hog-processing plant in Beardstown, Illinois, leaving 900 employees jobless
February 1984 -- Oscar Mayer spends $4 million to help restore the Statue of Liberty
July 1984 -- Company is ranked eighth in a list of sales by the nation's top 100 meat packers
May 1985 -- Jerry Hiegel resigns his position as president but remains the corporation's chairman and chief executive officer; James McVey is promoted to president
September 1985 -- Oscar Mayer's parent company, General Foods, is purchased by Philip Morris Companies for $5.8 billion
January 1986 -- Oscar Mayer announces it plans $20 million in corporate expansion
October 1986 -- Production of Oscar Mayer products begin in Southeast Asia under an operating agreement with Charoen Pokphand Group of Thailand
January 1987 -- James McVey is named Oscar Mayer's chief executive; company acquires Kemp Foods
June 1987 -- George Molchan, known as "Little Oscar," retires from Oscar Mayer; company phases out the "Little Oscar" goodwill ambassador position
1988 -- Philip Morris acquires Kraft, Inc.
1988 -- Lunchables, self-contained assortments of meat, crackers, cheese and dessert, are introduced
February 1989 -- Oscar Mayer closes its last slaughtering operation in Perry, Iowa,
1989 -- Kraft and General Foods are combined to form Kraft General Foods, Inc.
1995 -- Kraft General Foods is reorganized and name changed to Kraft Foods, Inc., with Oscar Mayer becoming one of 11 operating divisions
1995 -- Oscar Mayer and Kraft sales forces merge
1996 -- The 1-millionth Lunchable is sold
1996 -- Richard Searer is named to lead the company, replacing Robert Eckert.
1999 -- Oscar Mayer Park, the new home for East Madison Little League, opens; the land is provided by Oscar Mayer
2000 to present
2000 -- Kraft Foods purchases Boca Burger, producers of soy-based burgers and other meatless products, moving its headquarters and 20 administrative jobs to Madison
2001 -- Lunchables line is discontinued in Madison and moved to Davenport, Iowa, and Fullerton, California
2002 -- Oscar Mayer announces it will shut down one of the lines that makes ready-to-serve bacon for restaurants and other food-service outlets, resulting in the layoff of about 50 people
2002 -- Kraft Foods invests $30 million in a new cold cut facility at Madison's Oscar Mayer plant
2002 -- Oscar Mayer replaces its chilled-water cooling system with an air cooling system, reducing its water use by about 40 percent
January 2004 -- Kraft Foods announces it will cut approximately 75 white-collar jobs at the Madison headquarters
November 2004 -- The Altria Group Inc., which owns most of Oscar Mayer parent Kraft, prepares to split itself into two or three entities
2005 -- 40 white-collar jobs at the company's Madison headquarters are eliminated
January 2006 -- Kraft Foods says it will close up to 20 more plants and cut 8,000 jobs over three years
2007 -- The Altria Group Inc. divests its majority stake in Kraft Foods Inc.
April 2007 -- Harold Mayer, 90, one of the four grandchildren of founder Oscar F. Mayer dies; he previously was a board chairman
November 2007 -- Kraft Foods agrees to sell its two dozen Post cereals to Ralcorp Holdings
June 2008 -- Oscar Mayer introduces a reformulated beefier hot dog
September 2008 -- Kraft Foods became a part of the Dow Jones Industrial average
Sepember 2009 -- Rick Searer, head of Kraft's North American business and a 30-year company veteran who headed Oscar Mayer for a decade, retires
March 2010 -- Kraft Foods says it will cut the salt in its products that are sold in North America by an average of 10 percent
June 2011 -- Workers at Madison's Kraft/Oscar Mayer factory get part of a $4.2 million settlement with the company representing the time it takes them to put on protective gear when they start work and take off the extra apparel at day's end
July 2011 -- The Wienermobile turns 75
March 2012 -- Kraft announces plans to spin off its global snack business in October; the company, called Mondelez International, will be home to global brands including Oreo, Cadbury and Nabisco
June 2012 -- Kraft Foods moves its stock listing from the New York Stock Exchange to the Nasdaq Global Select Market
October 2012 -- Kraft Foods splits into two companies
September 2013 -- Sam Rovit becomes Oscar Mayer president; he leaves in February 2015
March 2015 -- Mark Magnesen is named president of Oscar Mayer
March 2015 -- H.J. Heinz Co. announces plans to buy Kraft Foods Group, making it the world's fifth-largest food company and the third-largest in the U.S.
July 2015 -- Shareholders of Kraft Foods Group approve merging with H.J. Heinz Co.; the new company is Kraft Heinz
August 2015 -- Kraft Heinz cuts about 2,500 jobs — including 165 nonunion jobs at the Madison Oscar Mayer plant — as part of its plan to slash costs
Nov. 4, 2015 -- Company officials announce Kraft Heinz will close its Madison Oscar Mayer plant
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