Blue Plate Mayonnaise was one of the first commercially prepared mayonnaise brands in the country. Its legend continues to spread, perking up food wherever it’s found.
Way back in the 1900s, mayonnaise as we know it did not exist. The creamy condiment was a handmade gourmet item found only in homes and restaurants. Then a Mrs. Schlorer of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, began producing the stuff by hand and selling it in her delicatessen (bless her). Demand rose, and the product became so popular, equipment was made to produce it commercially.
1927-Enter the marketing mavericks of Wesson-Snowdrift Oil Co. They saw a way to use their soybean oil and supply the South with a high-quality mayonnaise product. After all, those tomato sandwiches, po-boys, and salads needed something to hold them together.
1929-Blue Plate Foods, Inc. is founded as a subsidiary of Wesson-Snowdrift, and mayo production begins in a little warehouse in Gretna, Louisiana.
1941-Blue Plate moves across the Mississippi River to mid-city New Orleans. The company decides to build an ultramodern, three-story building made of concrete.
1943-Although construction is hampered by World War II, the new plant officially opens in November. The Blue Plate Fine Foods factory, with its streamlined facade, terra-cotta tile, and glowing art deco sign, becomes a local icon. It is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Blue Plate Mayo spreads the legend throughout the Southeast, delivering daily delight in small trucks to each store. Also popular are Blue Plate’s margarine, preserves and jellies, salad dressing, barbecue sauce, and peanut butter products.
1960-Hunt Foods of California buys Wesson Oil and Blue Plate Foods, Inc.
1974-Southern gentleman Mr. William B. Reily III, whose grandfather (right) founded the popular Luzianne brand, acquires Blue Plate Foods from Hunt-Wesson. The mayo ownership returns to its beloved homeland in Louisiana and becomes part of the Wm. B. Reily and Company family.
The previously shuttered New Orleans plant has been refurbished and restored as multifamily housing: Blue Plate Artist Lofts.
Throughout the deep South and beyond, Blue Plate Mayonnaise continues to delight customers with its quality, heritage, and legendary taste.