Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Mars, Inc. is a family owned company, with six industry leading business units – Chocolate, Petcare, Food,

Drinks, Symbioscience and now Wrigley Gum and Sugar. It owns famous brands such as M & M's candies,

Snickers candy bars, Uncle Ben's rice, and Pedigree dog food.


1911: Frank C. Mars and his second wife, Ethel V. Healey (1884-1945), start making and selling butter

cream candies from their home's kitchen in Tacoma, Washington, USA. This leads to their renting their first

candy factory, the Mars Candy Factory, Inc.

1920: Frank C. Mars moves to larger quarters in Minneapolis, Minnesota where again he starts in the basket

candies business. Called "The Nougat House", the candy produced during this period is named "Patricia

Chocolates" after Frank and Ethel V's daughter.

1923: The Milky Way® bar is introduced and is an instant success. The first advertising is "A Chocolate

Malted Milk in a Candy Bar".

1930 The Snickers® bar is introduced and sold for five cents.

1940: Frank's son, Forrest Mars returned to the United States and founded M & M Limited in Newark, New

Jersey, to manufacture chocolate candies in a sugar shell. At that time, stores reduced their stock of

chocolate in the summer because of the lack of air conditioning, and Forrest hoped to capitalize on the

unique construction of M & M's to sell the candy year round. The name of the candy was derived from the

initials of Mars and an associate, Bruce Murrie. M & M's Peanut Chocolate Candies were introduced in

1954, the same year the famous slogan 'the milk chocolate melts in your mouth--not in your hand' was

first used.

1942 Hard covered rice, impervious to insects is developed in the U.S. by Converted Rice, Inc. for troops

in tropical conditions. Mars opens the first commercial rice parboiling plant in Houston, Texas, USA.

They began selling rice to the U.S. Army, which they continued to supply throughout World War II. The

company becomes known as Uncle Ben's® Incorporated in 1959. Uncle Ben's eventually became the

leading brand of rice worldwide

1960: The advertising slogan, "A Mars a day helps you work, rest and play" is first used in the UK.

1967: Forrest merged his business with the Mars Company owned by his father and took over operation of

the new company. He established a radically egalitarian system at the company in which workers were

called associates and everyone–from the president down–punched a time clock. Offices were eliminated

and desks were arranged in a wagon-wheel fashion, with the higher-ranking executives in the center, to

facilitate communication between individuals and functional areas.

1969: Mars Electronics International (MEI) began operating in 1969 and was responsible for the

introduction of electronics to the vending machine industry.

1982 Mars becomes the first candy in space when M&M'S® are chosen by the first space shuttle

astronauts to be included in their food supply

1983: The Flavia® fresh brew system is launched. It is an innovative system for the preparation of hot

drinks using fresh ground coffee and real leaf teas within a single portion pack.

1983: The first "Five Principles of Mars" booklet is published and distributed globally across Mars.

1984: M&M'S® Plain and Peanut Chocolate Candies and Snickers® bar are announced "Official Snack

Foods of the Olympic games". Mars paid $5 million to have M & M's and Snickers named 'the official snack

foods of the 1984 Olympic Games.' Commercials featured athletes getting quick energy from sugary snacks.

2000: M&M'S® Chocolate Candies become "The Official Candy of the New Millennium". MM is the

Roman numeral for 2000.

By introducing Milky Way II, Mars became the first candy manufacturer to try to gain or retain calorie- and

fat-conscious customers.

In early 2000, Mars launched a web site,, dedicated to celebrating recent research claiming

health benefits for certain of chocolate's plant-derived components.

2004: Klix® Outlook vending machine is launched featuring a choice of color schemes and a greater

range of drink choices.

2008: Mars acquires the Wm. Wrigley, Jr. Company, whose product offerings include gum, mints, hard and

chewy candies, lollipops and chocolate. The transaction makes Mars one of the largest confectionery

companies in the world.

No comments:

Post a Comment