Made in Chicago - Participating Companies: Confections, Electronics, Furniture/Appliances
Blommer Chocolate is a fully integrated chocolate maker serving customers around the world. It was founded by the Blommer brothers in 1939 and remains family owned and operated. Its Chicago plant at 600 W. Kinzie is one of three Blommer factories in the United States. In addition to making chocolate for the Blommer label, the company also provides processed ingredients for other manufacturers. It’s the largest cocoa bean roasting operation in the country, and it provides more cocoa butter and powder to food companies than any other domestic manufacturer.
Cupid Candies, 7637 S. Western Ave., is a family owned business established in 1936 by Paul and Pauline Stefanos. Its chocolate contains only the finest ingredients, including dairy cream and butter, premium nuts, real chocolate, and natural flavors. In the early 1970’s, son John Stefanos expanded the company’s South Side retail shops by developing private labels for companies like Crate & Barrel, Figi’s and Golden Farm Candies. Product lines also include sugar-free items, and French mints, available in several downtown and North Shore retail shops.
Ferrara Pan Candy
Ferrara Pan Candy, 7301 W. Harrison St., makes classic American sweets like Red Hots, Jaw Breakers, and Boston Baked Beans. Panned candies, made in a rotating drum, are the company’s specialty, although it also licenses such products as Gummies, fruit snacks, and seasonal chocolate-covered nuts. Ferrara Pan’s top-selling Lemonheads spawned a line of sweet-and-sour fruit flavors including Appleheads, Cherryheads, Grapeheads and Orangeheads. The 90-year-old company is still operated by descendants of its founders. Employees apprentice a year and a half before stirring up the handmade treats on their own.
M&M / Mars
The Chicago facility was established in 1929 and was the first large scale manufacturing operation built by M&M/Mars. Located at 2019 N. Oak Park Ave., the plant produces many great chocolate and confection products including 3 Musketeers Bar, Snickers Bar, Mars Almond Bar, Munch Bar and Milky Way Bar. The Spanish revival-style facility was the first large-scale factory the company constructed en route to becoming one of the world’s largest candy makers. For more than 88 years, M&M/Mars has been a global provider of high-quality snackfood creating some of the world’s best-loved brands.
Margie’s Candies ice cream parlor, 1960 N. Western Ave, was founded in the 1920s by Greek immigrant Peter George Poulos. It later expanded to include chocolate and other sweets which it manufactures on behalf of other companies. From the beginning, Margie’s candy, ice cream, and fudge sauce have been homemade. It was the homemade fudge sauce, poured over 18 percent butterfat ice cream, that attracted the Beatles after their concert in Comiskey Park. The shop is today operated by Peter Poulos Jr.
Primrose Candy, 4118 W. Parker Ave., combines old world traditions and modern technology to make a variety of hard candies, lollipops, taffies, caramels and other sweets. The company was founded by Frank Puch in 1928 and is today run by his grandchildren. A majority of its business is for private labels and contract manufacturers.
Tootsie Roll Industries Inc.
Tootsie Roll Industries Inc., 7401 S. Cicero Ave., has manufactured candy for more than 100 years. Products produced by its 1,500 Chicago-based employees are primarily sold under the familiar brand names Tootsie Roll, Tootsie Roll Pops, Child’s Play, Charms, Blow Pop, Blue Razz, Cella’s, Mason Dots, Mason Crows, Junior Mints, Charleston Chew, Sugar Daddy and Sugar Babies.
Vosges Haut-Chocolat, 2211 N. Elston Ave., produces all-natural, European-style, gourmet truffles, such as Absinthe, Mint Julep, Black Pearl, Wink of the Rabbit, Naga, Gianduja, Woolloomooloo, Chef Pascal, Budapest, Viola and Ambrosia. Vosges truffles have exotic influences of an “East meets West” theme. The infusions of rare spices and flowers, combined with premium chocolate, give a delicate balance of flavor insuring “the best tasting truffle in the world”. The women-owned company started in 1997.
World’s Finest Chocolate
World’s Finest Chocolate, 4801 S. Lawndale Ave., has made fine chocolate products for more than 50 years. One of a handful of chocolate makers in the country that imports, roasts, and grinds all of its beans in-house, the company produces more than 180,000 pounds of premium chocolate every day. The 450-person company is experiencing tremendous growth in their direct mail gift catalogs, promotional and hospitality programs, private labels and its newest control brand--Union Vale Chocolates. School kids have sold World’s Finest Chocolate bars to raise funds for organizations ranging from school and church groups to athletic programs.
Since 1940, Beltone hearing aids have been designed with one goal in mind - capturing the sound of the human voice so it comes through as clearly as possible. With more than 40 hearing aid patents, Beltone hearing aids feature the latest advancements in product design, microelectronics, and laser and computer technology. Bel-Tone maintains a 1,000-person manufacturing facility at 4201 W. Victoria St.
Christiana Industries, 6500 N. Clark St., was founded in 1956 as a producer of lamp sockets for the television industry. Today it specializes in lamp sockets for vacuum cleaners, pinball games, exit signs, scoreboards, truck and trailer lights, radios and elevators. Christiana’s largest market is the automotive industry, for which its 205 employees produce dome lights, courtesy lights, glovebox lights, and rail, trunk, tail and license plate lamps.
ITT Industries manufactures fluid handling components, flow switches, and valves from a factory at 3500 N. Spaulding Ave. The facility was built in 1940 by the McDonnell & Miller Co., which produced automatic boiler water feeders for low-pressure steam boilers. As steam locomotives passed into history in the 1950s, the technology was adapted to the new commercial and industrial air conditioning industry where a flow switch was needed to prevent freeze-up of the chillers. ITT acquired McDonnell & Miller Co. in 1971 and continues to operate the plant.
Jaidinger Manufacturing Co.
Jaidinger, 1921 West Hubbard St., provides produces electrical switches, relays, contact assemblies and related products for the telecommunications, gaming, home appliance, automotive, sea craft, aerospace, microphone and agricultural industries.
Founded in 1902, Joslyn Manufacturing, builds hardware for utilities, telecommunications and cable television systems. Owned by Danaher Corporation, Joslyn employs more than 700 people in four manufacturing plants and three distribution centers. Its Chicago plants, including a main facility at 3700 S. Morgan St., produce pole line hardware, surge arresters and cable accessories.
Founded in 1979, Marco Lighting is a precision sheet metal fabricator specializing in custom lighting applications and merchandising systems. Located at 457 N. Leavitt St., company products range from custom sheet metal for lighting sconces to electrical housings for the modular furniture industry.
Mellish & Murray
Mellish & Murray has been operating in Chicago for 109 years. The fourth-generation, woman-owned family business manufactures navigational and anti-collision lighting for the automotive and general aviation uses. Located at 1715 W. Carroll Ave., it also manufacture sheet metal fabricators, exhaust systems and industrial storage bins and cabinets.
A leading manufacturer of commercial loudspeakers and related accessories, Quam, 234 E. Marquette Road, has built an outstanding reputation since 1930 for supplying world-class products used in today’s paging and public address systems, background and foreground music applications, and various critical communications systems throughout the security and correctional market segments. Product applications vary widely but primarily include healthcare facilities, corporate office environments, retail establishments, industrial/OEM and sound masking projects.
S & C Electric
Specializing in the manufacture of high-voltage power interrupter switches, fuses, control devices and numerous circuit switches, S & C Electric employs 1,700 people at its factory at 6601 N. Ridge Ave.
Spire Solar Chicago
Spire Solar Chicago, a business unit of Spire Corporation, has been established in Chicago in collaboration with the City of Chicago, ComEd, and BP Solar. Spire Solar Chicago is a vertically integrated photovoltaic manufacturing plant and installation business. Current commitments have Spire Solar Chicago, 629 W. Cermak Ave., producing approximately $18 million in photovoltaic systems annually.
Switchcraft Switchcraft Switchcraft
Established in Chicago in 1946 to manufacture jacks, plugs and switches, Switchcraft today is a leading supplier of components for the audio, video, telecommunications, computer, medical, military, appliance, transportation and instrumentation industries. Its 185,000-square-foot production facility is located at 5555 N. Elston Ave.
Zenith Controls Inc.
In 1998, Zenith Controls celebrated 75 years of manufacturing power switching equipment and controls in Chicago. Located at 830 W. 40th St., Zenith provides reliable power management systems worldwide. In Chicago, Zenith Controls products are used at O’Hare and Midway airports, Sears Tower, Chicago Board of Options Exchange, Shedd Aquarium, Navy Pier, Comiskey Park, United Center, and in buildings operated by Quaker Oats and Sara Lee.
Art Specialty, 3421 W. 48th Place, is one of the country’s leading manufacturers of table, desk and floor lamps. Founded more than six decades ago, the company produces a variety of brass, steel, chrome and baked enamel lamps sold under brand names like Decorative Select, Apollo, Sightmaster, Flexarm, and E-Z Glide.
Founded in 1958, Buddy is family owned and operated manufacturer of steel office products and related accessories, such as storage systems, carts, mail sorters, literature racks, time card racks, coat hooks, garment racks and desktop organizers. More than 90 percent of its 1,400 products are produced by its 220-person staff at 1350 S. Leavitt St.
C. Cretors revolutionized the concessions industry more than 100 years ago when company founder Charles Cretors created the first steam-driven popcorn wagon that used corn oil to pop kernels instead of the traditional method using an open flame. Cretors displayed the wagon at the Chicago World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893 and it was an immediate hit.
Still family-owned, C. Cretors manufactures popcorn machines at 3243 N California Ave. for specialty vendors, theaters and other concessionaires around the world.
A producer of high-quality storage systems and industrial furniture for more than 30 years, Edsal’s headquarters and 1,000-person production facility are located at 4400 S. Packers Ave. It specializes in industrial shelving, pallet and bulk storage racks, storage cabinets, lockers, service carts, work benches, shop desks and stools.
A maker of portable children’s goods since the early 1980s, Hoohobbers specializes in kid-sized tables, chairs, easels, toy boxes, back packs, bath accessories and other items. Produced at 2847 W. 47th Place, Hoohobbers products are available in kids stores across the country. Its exclusive line of 100-percent cotton apparel is sold through its six Midwest HooHobbers retail stores.
Kolcraft, 3455 W. 31st Place, is the country’s leading crib mattress manufacturer. The company was founded in 1946 when Leo Koltun made playpen pads out of cotton batting and oil cloth covers for post-World War II babies. In 1949, he used surplus padding to invent the all-around crib and play yard bumper pad before expanding into other types of pads, including crib mattresses. In 1979, Kolcraft added plastic products with the introduction of the innovative Carri-Cradle, the first combination infant carrier and rocker. Kolcraft also makes car seats, play yards, high chairs, rockers, walkers, walker alternatives, bassinets and strollers.
Established in 1946, Leedal is a manufacturer of stainless steel equipment for the laboratory and photographic processing fields. Stainless steel fabrication is the company’s specialty, including high quality sinks, tanks, countertops, cabinets, shelves, and more, all made in its Chicago factory at 4025 S. Western Ave.
Established in 1946, Marvel is a Chicago based office furniture manufacturer. Marvel has been exceeding customer expectations in the office furniture industry for decades. As a GREENGUARD recognized metal furniture manufacturer, Marvel’s Chicago factories provide a variety of office furniture lines designed to meet any office or educational needs. Marvel offers free layout and design services and a fast turn around time along with 5 day shipping and lifetime guarantees! Call us today to see how we can help you with your projects at 800-621-8846.
Operating today as an ISO 9001 company Midco International has been manufacturing direct-fired and gas power burners since 1911 with firing rates ranging from 50K BTU to 6 million BTU under the trade names of Economite, Incinomite, and Unipower. Midco’s long established image of designing quality burner that meet or exceed the needs of our customers for a wide variety of applications. Midco burners are used in: boilers, food service equipment, bakery, conveyer, process and rack ovens, kilns, incinerators, spray booths, breweries, grain dryers, pressure washers, commercial dryers, furnaces, agricultural processing, water heaters, heat treatment, commercial irons, crop drying, gas utilities and space heating. With our vision of commitment to innovative ways to better serve you they have developed a new two-staged technology for the Makeup Air market and a patented series of flexible compact burners in our Economite Line. Visit their web site at www.midcointernational.com or contact their customer service for additional information and sales locations.
Another part of our company is EmberGlo, A Division of Midco International. Following is some information about EmberGlo – Manufacturer of Gas and Electric Char-Broilers and direct and indirect water hookup Food Steamers. As an ISO 9001 certified company EmberGlo® has been manufacturing Gas and Electric Char Broilers and Food Steamers since 1911. All of our products are commercial grade stainless construction.
Midwest Folding Products
Midwest Folding Products, 1414 S. Western Ave., manufactures a broad line of institutional quality folding products, including folding banquet and meeting room tables, portable stage systems, portable choral and band risers and mobile cafeteria tables. Founded by Lester Speyer, the company recently celebrated its 50th anniversary.
Pace Industries, 2545 W. Polk St., is a leading U.S. manufacturer of bathroom furniture. Founded in 1978, Pace’s technological developments have led to more than 20 U.S. patents. The company’s newest technology involves a composite board designed to replace particle board. Made of straw rather than wood, the product is tree-free, formaldehyde-free, flame retardant, and more water resistant than marine plywood. Pace is the first in the U.S. with the new material, which it expects to have a significant impact on the furniture industry worldwide.
RF Metal+Works, 2215 S. Union St., produces custom metalworks including furniture, building materials and architectural metals.
Richardson Seating, 2545 W. Arthington St., has produced stack, club and dining chairs, bar stools, bar loungers and 50’s style diner chairs for 27 years. The company is also one of the world’s largest manufacturers of custom logo seating.
Royal Industries, 538 N. Milwaukee Ave., manufactures baby chairs, bar stools, stack chairs, tables and bases, injection-molded plastic products and metal stamping products. The company dates to 1939.
Sohn's Heirloom Bedding
Sohn's is a fourth-generation, family-owned mattress manufacturer that uses cotton, wool, and latex materials. Located at 320 N. Damen Ave., the company's innerspring units utilize heavy-gage, high-coil springs. Styles range from firm to orthopedic, plush to pillowtop.