The Univer Group, headquartered in Kecskemét, was founded in 1948 and is fully controlled by Hungarian owners. By today, it has evolved to become a prominent player in Hungary’s food industry and trade field. The company provides a livelihood for some 1300 people all in all, making it a significant employer in Kecskemét. Univer Product Zrt., which engages in the production and marketing of condiments, is a definitive member of the Group, but the holding company’s sphere of interest includes Univer Coop Zrt.—which comprises retail units—along with Alföld Zrt., the operator of one of the longest standing shopping centres of the region, Alföld Supermarket in Kecskemét. Additional Group members include Univer Zrt. and Univer Szövetkezeti Zrt. which see to holding responsibilities; Univer Product Zrt’s subsidiary in Romania, Univer Product s.r.l., and Univer-Sport Kft., which is in charge of sponsoring sports.
Univer primarily owes its recognition to its typical Hungarian products, which count as indispensable condiments for Hungarian cuisine—Erős Pista and Red Gold—and are made at the company’s Hetényegyháza compound, along with Univer Goulash paste, Édes Anna and the onion/garlic pastes. Newer additions to our Hungarian style product range include Karikás Pista—fresh hot paprika slices in their own juice—and Haragos Pista, an extra hot freshly ground paprika product. The range of the products the company markets is much broader still: Univer mayonnaise, mustard, ketchup, salad dressings and table sauces are produced in Kecskemét, along with premium fruit jams, juices, tomato based products and baby food. Regarding this last category, the Great Plain company devotes special attention to putting state of the art technology and production safety conditions in place, and this has allowed Univer baby foods to be made with no added sugar and free of allergens—which is unique on the Hungarian market. Nothing reflects the popularity of the company’s products more than the fact the Univer is the market leader in the mayonnaise, mustard and Hungarian style condiment categories alike.
Development and innovation has always played a prominent role in Univer’s history, which looks back on 65 years. As a part of that, it has been a true pioneer in some areas of Hungary’s food industry. Red Gold and Erős Pista, both developed by Univer, are Hungarian products that are the stuff of legend by today. In 1975, our company became the first to market ready-to-use mayonnaise in Hungary. The company from Kecskemét tries to keep abreast of ever changing consumer demand, not only in terms of products, but it also seeks to apply the latest state of the art production technologies in production. In this regard, the inauguration of our new production plant in 2009 brought a milestone in the company’s life. This project, implemented with an investment of HUF three billion, allows us to supply Hungarian and foreign markets, boost our manufacturing efficiency, and extend our product range with no added preservatives in the mayonnaise, mustard, ketchup and salad dressing categories. Besides traditional packaging like tubes, jars and plastic bottles, 2011 saw the introduction of stand-up pouches, which makes it easy to get even the last drop of product out of the pack.
Univer makes no secret of its goal to introduce the inimitable flavours of Hungarian cuisine to as many people living beyond Hungary’s borders as possible in the hope of developing their liking for those. In connection with this, export operations have been getting an increasingly greater role apart from domestic sales. Among our current foreign markets, Romania is the most significant, but the company’s products can be found all over the world: in Germany, Poland, the United States, Canada or even Australia.