Reach out and touch someone. We're Beatrice
August 11, 2011 9:11 PM   Subscribe

The Porticus Centre is a repository for historical material from Beatrice Foods, Bell System and the Borden Company.

The section on Beatrice history tells the story of its breakup (comprising of over 100 brands at the time):
Unfortunately, Beatrice Companies, Inc. was acquired by Kohlberg Kravis & Roberts Co.(KKR), in April 1986, with little care for the company history or employees. Their mission, the same as when KKR acquired Safeway Stores and Nabisco, was to strip the company down and sell off pieces of the company to other companies. When KKR came on board, they sold the Beatrice Dairy Products, Inc. (Meadow Gold, Hotel Bar Butter, Kellers Butter Mountain High Yogurt and Viva Milk Products), to Borden, Inc. in 1987. International Playtex, Jhirmack and Almay were sold off as one company, while Avis-rent-a-car went to company management. Coca-Cola bottling operations were sold off. Bottle water such as Arrowhead Drinking Water, Ozarka Drinking Water, Great Bear Drinking Water were also sold off. Brands like Samsonite, Culligan, Stiffel Lamps, del mar window coverings, Louver Drape window coverings, Aristokraft kitchen cabinets, Day-Timers, Waterloo Industries tool boxes, Aunt Nellies and Martha White were merged into a new entity called E-II Holdings, which was later purchased by American Brands. Tropicana Products, Inc. was sold off. All of the international operations were folded into a new entity called Beatrice International Holdings in 1987, which was later purchased that year by Reginald F. Lewis, through junk bond financing for $985 million and renamed the company TLC Beatrice International Holdings. TLC Beatrice sold the Canadian operations; Beatrice Foods Canada, Ltd., in 1990 to Onyx and then Beatrice Foods, Inc. later ended up in the hands of Parmalat in 1997.
The Borden section is very light on material but the other two have some wonderful print ads, photos and videos.
posted by unliteral (10 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Oh, man. These ads still haunt my nightmares.

"We're Beatrice."

posted by dersins at 9:55 PM on August 11, 2011 [3 favorites]

I'm finding it increasingly difficult to keep track of who owns what these days. The latest is that Kraft is splitting in two, one focusing on snacks and the other on general groceries.
posted by evilcolonel at 9:57 PM on August 11, 2011

posted by pracowity at 11:00 PM on August 11, 2011

When I was a kid my dad hauled milk for Borden. He was an owner-operator and I'd get to ride with him for a few weeks over summer vacation. He hauled for anybody who'd pay him for a load, and we covered the entire eastern half of the country, but my favourite runs were always for Borden. We'd carry a tanker full of milk across a few states, and when we reached the factory, we'd get to go inside and I'd get ice cream while the truck was unloaded. It was good ice cream.
posted by titus n. owl at 11:12 PM on August 11, 2011 [3 favorites]

Borden shakes. Excuse me, I'll be in a canned-food reverie.
posted by zippy at 2:03 AM on August 12, 2011

Dersins, what a find. At least the kid is handing the hot dog to the clown and not the other way around.
posted by BrotherCaine at 4:24 AM on August 12, 2011

Borden's antiquities should always include The Sunshine Makers
posted by hexatron at 5:35 AM on August 12, 2011

Beatrice also owned a tannery...
posted by oneironaut at 6:46 AM on August 12, 2011

Bell, Borden, Beatrice Galactica.
posted by Eideteker at 7:39 AM on August 12, 2011 [1 favorite]

Is that Biff Tannen at :07 in dersins video?
posted by schoolgirl report at 9:18 AM on August 12, 2011

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