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This is a very old entry — images are small, formatting is off.

 

Hebrew National, Now More National

Reviewed May. 20, 2010 by Armin

Industry / Food Tags /

Hebrew National Logo, Before and After

I don’t consume enough sausages to know which one is the leading brand in the market, probably Kraft makes some rendition of the mystery cylinder meat, I really wouldn’t know. But if you asked me to name one sausage brand I would instantly think of Hebrew National. Not because I know what it tastes like, but because it has a cool name, a cool slogan — “We answer to a higher authority” — and it feels like it plays by its own rules, defying mainstream consumption with a kosher product and, again, what would seemingly be a very limiting name. Originally established in 1905 on the Lower East Side in New York City, Hebrew National catered to the city’s growing Jewish immigrant population, going through various changes over the last hundred years, most recently as part of ConAgra Foods. Beyond a good name and story, the product isn’t bad at all, according to some experts: Last year New York magazine asked über restaurateur Danny Meyer (and two other New York power chefs) to rate supermarket hot dogs — described as a “meatier hot dog” Hebrew National took the top spot. But enough hot dog talk…

TV ad from the 1970s.

Hebrew National

An older version of the logo.

Recently, Hebrew National introduced a new logo and packaging — the packaging (before and after) is so nondescript it really doesn’t add anything to the discussion here, so it’s been left out — and, unfortunately, I think they have mainstreamed the product a little too much, especially if you compare it to an earlier version of the logo, shown above. The latter was fairly quirky and odd to be a national supermarket product and I guess that’s part of what makes it so endearing in my view, then it evolved into something less quirky but it still retained the main elements — neither was great, per se, but it stood out. This last version though, is completely washed out. You could write Honey Graham Crackers, Mac and Cheese, or Corn Flakes in the new typography treatment and it wouldn’t make a difference. It now looks just like dozens of other products, and if that’s the price to pay for the growth of a product, then all I can say is oy vey.

Thanks to Josh Korwin for the tip.

 

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