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Wisconsin Cheese Makers' Association / Proceedings of the Wisconsin Cheese Makers' Association forty-third annual convention November 14, 15, 1934 assembled in the Eagles Auditorium Sheboygan, Wisconsin

Leonard, John
Address,   pp. 70-74 PDF (1.2 MB)

Page 71

collectively what we could not do by ourselves. We made up our minds
we had to act together, or act separately-just a matter of taking our
I am going to talk to you about what was done in our prune indus-
try. It possibly has a comparison with what you need to do here.
After the panic of 1929 things got bad in the prune industry and we
found we had to do something whether we wanted to or not. Our
prunes got down to the lowest point in price that the industry had
ever seen. We simply had to do something.
When we were organizing, in the summer of 1932, prunes got down
to a place where a farmer was getting from 1 %¢ to 1% ¢
per average
pound. That is what the factories were paying us. I am one of the
growers and know. At the present time we have been able to build
that up to a place where the growers are now getting from 3'A to
4'A for average orchard run prunes. The price varies little from time
to time. It took us from February of 1932 until September first of
1932 to get organized and get going and institute our advertising
campaign. I understand that you are contemplating with cheese to
have an advertising campaign.
Now, in advertising we found out there from years of experience
that we have to have merchandising work to go along with it. We can
put our advertisements in the papers or on the billboards or in some
other medium but we have to have men to go around to the wholesale
executives and to the larger retailers and to brokers and other ele-
ments of the trade and wake those fellows up to the importance of our
program. You know there isn't any substitute for personal contact,
and we found no matter how much we advertised we had to send our
personal representatives around to wake up the trade. We also did a
lot of research work.
This is something you can apply to your own cheese industry. Here
is one thing we did in the prune industry. We assembled the research
work that had already been done, the scientific facts that are known
about our product. There was a movement with some of the larger
universities to dig out additional facts, and after we got these facts
together, we took them to the food committee of the American Medi-
cal Association and got those facts approved and accepted. Then we
had those facts printed in a little pamphlet with the seal of the food
committee of the American Medical Association on it and those are
being sent out to almost 120 thousand doctors in the United States
and we are playing those facts up in our advertising this year, in ad-
dition to playing up the delicious qualities of prunes where you eat a
food just because you like it, just as you eat your Wisconsin cheese be-
cause you like it. Those are points that must be stressed, of course.
You have a wonderful university over at Madison. You have some
scientists there with nation-wide reputations, some of the finest scien-
tists in the United States, are second to none. You can do in your
cheese industry similar things to those that I am pointing out that
has been done in the prune industry.

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