The story of Gerber took off in 1927 in Fremont, Michigan, in Dorothy Gerber’s kitchen, where she started straining solid food to feed to her baby daughter, as recommended by the family pediatrician. Dan Gerber, Dorothy’s husband, brought the process to the family’s canning factory to help his wife with the arduous process of straining the food. The result product was an instant hit with the workers and soon the company was producing and selling the first packaged baby food at supermarkets nationwide.
The baby face associated with Gerber came in 1928 when the company held a contest to find a cute baby to use for its advertising campaigns. The winner was Dorothy Hope Smith, with a picture of a neighbor baby, Ann Turner, who would become the iconic “Gerber baby,” known and recognized across the world as the face of the brand.
Gerber started diversifying the company in the 50s with the introduction on a Gerber toy line in 1955 and a large line of baby products in 1965, continuing to grow in the national market and venturing into international markets over the next decades.
In the toy arena, Gerber signed a licensing agreement with Toy Biz, Inc. in 1994 to launch a line of toys for infants and toddlers.
Gerber continued to grow over the years and in 2007, European giant Nestlé bought the company, bringing the two world leaders in childhood nutrition together under the same leadership.
Gerber Childrenswear® is made with a focus on comfort. The brand has clothing for infant boys and girls with everything little ones need the first year: t-shirts, sleepwear, playwear, bibs and burp clothes, bedding, bath accessories and cloth diapers.
The brand also has a line of organic clothing made of 100 percent organic cotton fibers that have been naturally grown. The organic line is made from certified organic cotton that is grown without pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. This line includes a wide array of newborn essentials: white one piece shirts in short or long sleeves, printed one-piece shirts in bright colors, cloth diapers, body suits and bibs.
The Gerber line of clothing is sweet and simple, with basic pieces that any baby will need through the first year of life. Gerber offers great key wardrobe pieces at very reasonable prices, with most items retailing under $10, a great value for the money.
Over the last 80 years, Gerber has been intimately linked to early childhood. The company’s line of food has evolved and adapted to market changes, trends and fierce competition and still remains one of the largest manufacturers and distributors of items for babies and young children.
But Gerber is much more than a food distributor or a clothing retailer. The company has made sure its internal philosophy on sustainability extends to everything it does, from its manufacturing practices, adhering to strict safety and testing standards on its products, to using eco-friendly retail packaging for many of the company’s products. Gerber also implemented sustainable practices in its processing facilities with energy efficient lighting, use of recycling bins and many other environmentally friendly practices.
Gerber has also been involved for decades with local and national charities that help children in different situations. At a national level, the company has been supporting K.I.D.S (Kids in Distressed Situations) for more than 20 years. K.I.D.S is a global organization that helps kids and families impacted by poverty, illnesses or natural disasters.
For its value and quality driven approach to kids items and its environmentally sound corporate practices, we have to give Gerber 5 out of 5 stars.
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Gerber, Old Navy
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