Due to the ongoing Great Depression, Hobart J.
Thurber, Sr. was let go from his sales position at a
area ingredient manufacturer in 1933. He guessed correctly
that other ingredient companies faced with a slowdown in
business would welcome the chance to fix their sales costs by
hiring an independent sales organization. Thus was born
the Hobart J. Thurber Company, the oldest manufacturer’s
representatives of Food Ingredients in the
1933, Hobart J. Thurber, Sr. (center) opens the first industrial ingredients
brokerage company in Chicago.
Starting with Chocolate and Cocoa Powder, Hobart J. Thurber,
Sr. branched out with Fruit, Dairy, and Flavoring Ingredients
sold primarily to the Candy Industry. He, together with
two others formed the Candy Production Club of Chicago in the
basement of his
home. The club remains active to this day.
After serving in the Navy during World War II, Hobart J.
Thurber, Jr., joined the firm and was instrumental in broadening
product lines to include Flour, Nutmeats, and Peanut Butter,
while expanding territories to include
Indiana. He also served as President of the Candy Production Club
of Chicago and it was his idea to use Peanut Butter as an
ingredient in dry cereals.
Scott J. Thurber joined the company in 1972 and Craig J.
Thurber joined in 1975, representing a 3rd generation in the
business. The company’s product lines continued to
expand by including ingredients such as Lecithins, Food Grade
Chemicals, and Vegetable Oils. In 1986, this 3rd
generation took over active management of the company.
2010 saw the 4th generation of Thurber’s to enter the business with Brian joining the team. Bringing fresh ideas and techniques he is excited to follow in the traditions of excellence that the Thurber Company has been built and run on for over 80 years!