Liebig Company were the original founders of the product we know today as OXO. Their factories were located in Fray Bentos on the river Uruguay in South America. They published this ad for Liebig Company’s Extract of Beef in New high class cookery with game recipes compiled by Mrs Charles Clarke in 1896.
‘Fine Cooking at Home
Some people think that they cannot prepare the delicate soups and sauces and delicious made dishes, which arc peculiar to the best French cooking, in their homes. But by use of
Liebig Company’s Extract of Beef
as a stock for Soups, Sauces,
Made Dishes, they can be made
easily, cheaply, and successfully
N.B.-Get the genuine Liebig COMPANY’S and avoid disappointment. See that the signature of JUSTUS VON LIEBIG is in blue on the jar.’
Liebig company’s practical cookery book : a collection of new and useful recipes in every branch of cookery by Mrs H.M. Young, Liebig’s Extract of Meat Company(1893), tells us a little of the history of Liebig’s. On reading the extract (couldn’t resist the pun), it’s not hard to work out how OXO got its name.
‘LIEBIG “COMPANY’S” EXTRACT
AS SUPPLIED TO THE
British, German, French, Russian, Dutch,
Italian and other Governments,
TEN GOLD MEDALS and GRAND DIPLOMAS OF
HONOUR (Paris 1867, Two Gold Medals, for best
quality, and as FOUNDERS of a NEW BRANCH
of INDUSTRY, this being the ORIGINAL LIEBIG’S
For its Superiority over all other Extracts of Meat.
IIORS CONCOURS SINCE 1885.
At several periods of the present century various preparations and extracts of meat have been introduced to the attention of the medical profession and the public. Amongst these none have achieved such success as the now so well- known Liebig Company’s Extract of meat.
The reason for this is not far to seek.
Liebig Company’s Extract of Meat is the result of abstract scientific researches into the nature of meat, which Justus von Liebig published in the year 1847, combined with the experience and inventive genius of the most eminent engineers.
The extensive works of the Liebig’s Extract of Meat Company are located on an eminence on the river Uruguay, in South America, where fresh air and an unlimited supply of fresh water are
secured, indispensable necessities in an establishment where, for seven months during the slaughtering season, upwards of 1,500 oxen are killed daily.
The Company employ about 1000 hands, who, with their wives and children, form a community of about 3,000 souls. The greatest cleanliness prevails all over the establishment.
Since the Company was started in 1865 the number of cattle slaughtered exceeds 3,600,000 head, representing a value of about £ 10,000,000.
These statistics are very curious when it is considered that previous to the origin of the Company Baron Liebig never succeeded in using more than from 200 to 300 oxen annually for his Extract of Meat, which was then sold at from 20 to 25 shillings a pound, and used simply for medical purposes. It is due to Liebig’s Extract of Meat Company that Liebig’s desire has been realized, to give the benefit of his Extract to millions of consumers, from the richest down to the very poorest, and to make it a real public benefit.
Liebig Company’s Extract of Meat is made from the flesh of best cattle, not less than four years old, which have been reared in the grazing fields of Uruguay. The manufacture of the Extract of Meat, conducted by most experienced men, who have been in the Company’s service since its foundation, is under the strict supervision and control of the Company’s chemist, who testifies as to the quality of meat used, and analyses and examines every parcel of Extract before its shipment to Europe.
On its arrival at Antwerp the Extract is there again examined by a special chemist attached to the Company’s General Depot, and, as a final anddecisive test, samples of every consignment are
sent to Professor Max von Pettenkofer (the highest authority on hygienic matters living) and Baron H. von Liebig (the late Baron Justus’ son and successor), and only after their approval and guarantee as regards composition and flavour, is the Extract potted, put up in cases and sent out to all the markets of the world. It will be seen, therefore, that every means is used to manufacture this preparation under the most favourable conditions, with the result that absolute purity and uniform quality are ensured, as well as the most perfect concentration of the extracts of beef which it is possible to produce. These causes have no doubt led to the unparalleled success of the Liebig’s Extract of Meat Company.
The public should, consequently, be cautioned against various imitations, purporting to be equal to the Company’s Extract, and against other somewhat similar preparations, made from Extract, of Meat bought at random in the open market, much of which is of an unreliable and even objectionable character. The Company’s Extract is the only kind ever guaranteed genuine by Baron Justus von Liebig, and to protect themselves, the public should see that every jar purchased bears the facsimile of Justus von Liebig’s signature, in blue, across the label.’
Mrs Young frequently used the word oxen in her writing when referring to the Liebig Company cattle. Oxen, the plural of ox is dervived from the old English word oxa, a word of Germanic roots, related to the Dutch os and the German Ochse. Interestingly, 3 years after the above ad was published, the company introduced a cheaper version of meat extract. They named it OXO.