ORRVILLE, OHIO – Fruit spreads make up less than 5% of the J.M. Smucker Co.’s $7.8 billion in fiscal 2020 sales and yet those products are what come to mind when people think about the company. A new corporate identity unveiled Sept. 23 is meant to shift attention away from what the company once was and to what it is today.
“Given our ambitions of continued transformational growth, it is important our identity reflect the company we’ve grown to become and the one we aspire to be,” said Mark T. Smucker, president and chief executive officer. “Our new identity will aid our efforts to attract additional talented professionals, reinforce our category expertise with customers and suppliers and create greater awareness of the value we bring to our partners helping to spur new opportunities.”
A new logo shows a series of shapes that reflect that transition.
“We think it’s beautifully simple and full of meaning,” said Kara Buckler, director of creative services. “The red berry shape reflects our heritage and the values the company was built on. The green shape is our innovative mindset and ability to pivot to any challenge. The darker green represents our growth, teal is our people and culture, and purple represents the creativity that we hope will propel the company forward.”
Ray Hancart, director of communications and media relations, said the company has experienced dramatic growth over the past few decades and research with constituents showed their understanding of the company did not align with the reality of what the company is.
“For roughly 100 years we were closely tied to fruit spreads,” he said. “But about 20 years ago we made some strategic decisions to become a brand builder and marketer of pet food, coffee, peanut butter and snacks.”
The change is also meant to help the company attract top talent.
“We’re a Fortune 500 company with nearly $8 billion in sales, but people may not know that” Mr. Hancart said. “Prospective talent who only know us as a fruit spread manufacturer may only lightly consider us. We want the new identity to set the stage for who we are.”