More than 135 years of conserving the goodness of nature
Hero was created through various mergers and acquisitions over the years. Our history spans more than a century with roots in different parts of the world. We are a diverse gathering of people and ideas that have come together to conserve the goodness of nature. This is our history.
The foundations are laid 1886-1935
Following the birth of Hero in 1886, Beech-Nut and Schwartau followed soon after. During this early period, the Hero logo was created. Acquisitions saw the birth of Hero Benelux and Hero Spain, while Schwartau and Beech-Nut began expansion programs. The former also launched its iconic logo.
The formative years 1936-1972
Before the outbreak of war, milk powder and substitute infant nutrition were created within years of each other. The post-conflict period saw Schwartau re-build. It was also the baby-boom era with growth in many markets, and the birth of new Hero companies. Convenience increases in popularity, and with it Hero products. Hero Spain change their name and go national.
Hero under the Oetker stewardship 1973-1999
The last years of the millennium saw Hero and Beech-Nut turn 100, and the birth of Vitrac in Egypt and Organix on a kitchen table in England. One of the Group’s biggest brands, Hero Baby, is launched in Spain. In 1995, Dr Arend Oetker acquires a majority shareholding of the company and begins a multi-decade relationship with Hero, which continues today.
An international house of brands 2000-2022
An intense period of acquisitions and divestments begins. Beech-Nut, Organix, Semper, Juvela, Vitrac, and Kiviks-Marknad (Hero Brazil) join the Group, which also invests in research and quality. Hero also sets up offices in Russia and the Czech Republic, enters into a joint venture in Turkey, a strategic partnership with erdbär and acquires Baby Gourmet in Canada.