When it comes to cream cheese, one brand stands out as a timeless favorite and that is Philadelphia Cream Cheese. But did you know that despite its name, this iconic brand was actually invented in New York State?

Origin of Philadelphia Cream Cheese

In 1872, a dairyman named William Lawrence from Chester, New York, set out to make Neufchâtel which is a tangy and crumbly cheese that was very popular in Europe at the time. However, an accidental addition of an excessive amount of cream resulted in a creamier and more spreadable cheese. Lawrence unknowingly created what would eventually become known as "cream cheese."

Naming the Brand

Although the cheese was not marketed as "Philadelphia Cream Cheese" until 1880, the decision to use "Philadelphia" in the name stemmed from the reputation of the Philadelphia and surrounding area's high-quality dairy farms and creamier cheese products.

To sell larger quantities of cream cheese, Lawrence partnered with A.L. Reynolds, a cheese distributor in New York. Together, they began wrapping their blocks of cream cheese in foil and labeled them as "Philadelphia Cream Cheese."

Evolution and Ownership Changes

Over the years, Philadelphia Cream Cheese underwent various changes. The trademarked Philadelphia name was eventually sold to the Phenix Cheese Company, located in South Edmeston, New York. In 1928, Phenix merged with Kraft to form the Kraft-Phenix Cheese Company, solidifying the brand's place in the Kraft family.

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Today, Philadelphia Cream Cheese is currently owned by Kraft Heinz and Mondelez International, maintaining its legacy as a well-loved cream cheese brand.

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