Marzetti is a brand of salad dressings, dips, and other food products that has been around since 1896. The company behind the Marzetti brand has gone through some ownership changes over the years, but Marzetti dressings and dips continue to be popular grocery store and restaurant staples.
The History of Marzetti
The Marzetti brand was founded in 1896 by Teresa Marzetti, an Italian immigrant who opened a restaurant in Columbus, Ohio. At her restaurant, Marzetti’s Old World Kitchen, she served her homemade salad dressings and other entrees. Her legendary salad dressings soon became more popular than the food itself!
As demand grew, Teresa Marzetti began bottling her dressings and selling them to customers. This launched the Marzetti brand as a standalone product. Her original Marzetti dressing flavors included French, Mayonnaise, and Sour Cream & Chives.
In 1927, the first Marzetti manufacturing plant opened in Columbus to produce the dressings. The Marzetti Company was incorporated in 1939 and continued to expand distribution of its dressing products. Throughout the 1940s and 1950s, the company added more salad dressing flavors, dips, croutons, and other refrigerated products.
In 1970, the Marzetti brand was acquired by the Borden Company, taking Marzetti nationwide. Under Borden’s ownership throughout the 1970s and 1980s, distribution and product innovation accelerated. Many new Marzetti dressing flavors and dips were introduced during this time.
Acquisition by Newell Brands
In 1990, Borden sold Marzetti to Newell Brands (then called Newell Company). This marked the beginning of the most recent chapter in Marzetti’s ownership history.
Newell Brands is a major consumer goods company that also owns many other food brands like Crockpot, Rubbermaid, Ball, and more. After acquiring Marzetti, Newell continued expanding the brand’s distribution and products.
Some key events during Newell Brands’ ownership include:
- 1991 – New manufacturing plant built in Horse Cave, KY to increase production capacity
- 2005 – Acquisition of T. Marzetti Company, adding deli salads and foodservice products
- 2009 – Acquisition of Reames Foods, expanding product lines with pasta salads, dips, and more
- 2016 – Acquisition of Carroll Shelby Foods, adding sauces and seasonings
Today, Marzetti remains a wholly owned subsidiary of Newell Brands. Marzetti operates as part of Newell’s Food division, alongside brands like Crockpot, Ball, and Rubbermaid.
Marzetti’s Manufacturing Today
Marzetti operates two main manufacturing facilities today in Columbus, OH and Horse Cave, KY. Some details:
Columbus, OH Plant
- 240,000 square foot facility
- Produces refrigerated products like salad dressings, dips, garlic breads
- Employs ~400 people
Horse Cave, KY Plant
- 250,000 square foot facility
- Produces shelf-stable products like croutons, salad dressings, sauces
- Employs ~250 people
Between the two plants, Marzetti Company produces over 500 million units yearly of dressings, dips, croutons, and other products. They distribute to consumers via retail grocery stores and foodservice operators.
Marzetti’s Product Lines
Today, Marzetti manufactures a wide range of salad dressings, dips, croutons, and other refrigerated and shelf-stable foods. Some of their major product lines include:
Salad Dressings & Dips
This includes traditional Marzetti refrigerated salad dressings, garlic spreads, veggie dips, and more. Flavors include Ranch, Italian, Blue Cheese, Caesar, French, and many other varieties.
Specialty Branded Dressings & Sauces
Specialty brands include Girard’s, Cardini’s, Pfeiffer, Marzetti Simply Dressed, and more. Flavors range from vinaigrettes to Caesar and ranch.
Croutons & Salad Toppings
Marzetti produces shelf-stable croutons in flavors like Garlic Toast and Buttery Garlic. They also offer real bacon bits, seeds, and cheeses as salad toppings.
Pasta & Fruit Salads
Marzetti makes refrigerator-aisle pasta salads, fruit salads, and slaws to add some variety and convenience for consumers.
Sauces & Seasonings
The Carroll Shelby and other brands offer specialty sauces like Kansas City BBQ, Buffalo Wing Sauce, steak sauces, and more. Seasoning blends are also available.
Buttery, garlicky frozen breads can be heated up as an easy side dish or appetizer.
Where to Buy Marzetti Products
Marzetti products are sold at major grocery stores, supermarkets, club stores, and mass retailers in the United States. Some of the major chains that carry Marzetti include:
- Sam’s Club
- Food Lion
- Winn Dixie
Marzetti products can be found in the refrigerated sections for items like salad dressings and garlic bread, or on the shelf for croutons, seasonings, and sauces. Many stores carry Marzetti branded products as well as their private label store brand dressings and dips made by Marzetti.
In addition to retail, Marzetti supplies products to thousands of restaurants, hotels, schools, and other foodservice operators across the country.
As a subsidiary of publicly traded Newell Brands, Marzetti does not report standalone financial results directly. However, we can look at segments of Newell’s financial reporting to understand Marzetti’s performance.
In 2021, Newell’s Food division, which includes Marzetti, had $1.6 billion in net sales. This was a 6.4% increase vs the prior year. The overall Food segment saw operating margin increase from 15.7% to 18.7% in 2021.
|2021 Financials||Food Segment (includes Marzetti)|
|Net Sales||$1.6 billion|
Within Newell Brands annual reports and investor presentations, Marzetti is called out as a power brand contributing significantly to financial results. Specifically, Newell notes gains in Marzetti’s branded portfolio of dressings, dips, and croutons.
In 2022 and beyond, Newell Brands states that the Food division, including Marzetti, is expected to see continued growth at an above-average rate compared to other business units.
Marzetti salad dressings and other products have come a long way from the original restaurant of Teresa Marzetti back in 1896. After over 125 years in business, Marzetti maintains its status as a leading dressing, dip, crouton and specialty foods brand in the United States.
While the brand has passed through owners like Borden and now resides with Newell Brands, Marzetti has retained its identity and connection to its history through over a century of business evolutions. Millions of consumers continue to enjoy Marzetti’s dressings on salads and dips with fresh vegetables or pita chips.
From the original Marzetti’s Old World Kitchen to two state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities today, Marzetti’s commitment to quality, taste and innovation remains. Thanks to wide distribution across major grocery retailers and foodservice operators, consumers can continue to enjoy their favorite Marzetti products for many years to come.