Sunday, July 7, 2013

July 7 - Sliced Bread

85 years ago: On July 7, 1928, pre-sliced bread was sold commercially for the first time in the history of mankind by the Chillicothe Baking Company, in the north central Missouri town of Chillicothe. Sold as "Sliced Kleen Maid Bread" and available "at quality grocers in the area," the loaves were cut and wrapped in wax paper by the newly invented Rohwedder Bread Slicer, a machine created by Iowa-born inventor, Otto Rohwedder, a jeweler in St. Joseph, MO, who had worked on the contraption for more than a decade. His second machine was bought by a St. Louis baker, Gustav Papendick, who improved on its bread-wrapping – thereby addressing staleness, a major drawback of sliced bread. When Wonder Bread was marketed in sliced form in 1930, the phenomenon took off: people found it convenient to eat more slices, and did so more frequently. Consumption of things to put on bread (including jam) also increased, and standardization of slices boosted sales of pop-up toasters, which were invented by Charles Strite in 1926.

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