From humble beginnings in Switzerland, Maggi has become a global staple, used in thousands of meals every minute of every day.
The history of Maggi goes back to Frauenfeld, Switzerland, where Julius Maggi inherited his father’s mill in 1869. He began experimenting with new types of flour, trying to create more nutritious foods for local working-class families, and make foods that were faster and easier to prepare, as more Swiss women were working out of the home. By 1882, he was selling protein-rich legume meals which were highly successful.
In 1886, Maggi invented the first instant soup in the world, based on his high protein legume meals. The soups required concentrated seasoning packets, and Maggi soon began selling the seasoning independently of the soup.
Maggi Seasoning was originally sold in capsules, and later the product was dried and sold in cubes. The Maggi cube as we know it today was introduced in 1908, and has become an integral part of cuisine and food culture around the world. In countries as diverse as Germany, Gambia, Haiti, and India, the Maggi cube is part of daily cooking.
Maggi Seasoning Sauce
In other countries like the Netherlands, Romania, and Mexico, Maggi is more famous for its bottled seasoning sauce. The dark sauce, made with vegetable proteins, has nine different formulations reflecting the regional needs and tastes of the countries where it is sold.
Maggi Instant Noodles
Meanwhile, in Bangladesh, Singapore, New Zealand, and Malaysia, Maggi is known for their instant noodles. In Malaysia and Singapore, Maggi Goreng is a popular street food based on fried Maggi noodles.
In fact, every second of every day, more than 4,600 portions of food around the world are prepared with Maggi products.
In 1947, Maggi merged with Nestlé foods, and is now part of the Nestlé family of brands. In 2009, based on the research of local nutritional deficiencies, Nestlé began looking for a way to modify Maggi cubes to add essential nutrients that many West Africans lacked. Because the food was already widely consumed in the region (selling more than 80 million cubes a day in Nigeria alone), it was an excellent candidate for fortification with iron to help fight anaemia. However, food scientists at Nestlé had to find a way to add a significant amount of iron to each cube without altering the taste, color, or price. It took more than two years to perfect iron-fortified Maggi cubes, but now when the people of Central and West Africa cook with Maggi cubes, they are getting a simple, affordable, delicious dose of much-needed iron.
Maggi foods have always been about simple, affordable nutrition, and Nestlé is continuing that mission by constantly working to make Maggi foods more nutritious without altering the flavors and convenience that people rely on. It’s a challenge for a global brand, but the nutritionists and food innovators at Maggi seem up to the challenge.
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