Who is Libby of Libby’s Pumpkin?
Libby’s story actually dates back even further than the company itself. So, to understand who Libby is, you first need to understand where the pumpkins come from.
It All Started With a Seed
The pumpkin used in Libby’s canned pumpkin is called a Dickinson pumpkin. These pumpkins, which were first grown by Elijah Dickinson, are different from the traditional orange pumpkin (aka field pumpkin) you’re probably thinking of. Dickinson pumpkins are beige and have a smooth exterior — they don’t have the ribbings like field pumpkins.
“That’s actually a good thing because they taste much better and they have a much better texture than your average Jack-o’-lantern,” says Kristin Mitchell, the manager of brand marketing for Libby’s. “They kind of have a homely exterior to some degree, but what’s most beautiful about them is what’s inside: that thick orange flesh.”
And, yes, canned pumpkin is made from pumpkins.
Elijah Dickinson began growing and canning his Dickinson pumpkins in Morton, Illinois — now referred to as the “Pumpkin Capital of the World.” In 1929, Dickinson sold his pumpkin-packing company, Dickinson & Co., to another company: Libby, McNeil & Libby.
The purchase included the pumpkin-packing plant in Morton, which is where Libby’s Pumpkin is still produced to this day.
Eventually, the company name Libby, McNeil & Libby was shortened to simply Libby’s. And today, the brand is owned by Nestlé.
Pumpkin Pie, The Libby’s Way
In the 1920s, Libby, McNeil & Libby wanted to share new ways to use its products. To do this, the company created a Home Economics Department where chefs and scientists developed recipes. It was there the famous pumpkin pie was born. Today, the pumpkin pie recipe is proudly displayed on every single can of Libby’s.
No matter if you use one of Libby’s pie recipes, or another pumpkin recipe, it’s nearly impossible to get through autumn without adding a can (or many cans) of Libby’s Pumpkin to your pantry. You’re not alone either; every year Libby’s sells enough cans to make 90 million pumpkin pies, proving there really is no way quite like the Libby way.
Can I use my Halloween pumpkin for pie?
The “meat” inside a pumpkin, once the seeds and stringy interior have been scooped out, can be made into fresh pumpkin puree and used in a pie. Whether you have a secret pumpkin pie spice recipe or want to use a great recipe from another source, this is an easy, easy way to use up the pumpkin.
If pumpkin pie making isn’t in your future, we are accepting unpainted pumpkins at the farm to feed to our pigs. You can drop them off anytime on the parking pad next to the store. The pigs say “Thanks” in advance.
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