Something to crow about!
Carlisle Francis Longmore, pioneer advertiser and food manufacturer, burst onto the Melbourne market in the early twentieth century. By the 1930s, Longmore’s White Crow jellies, sauces and essences would be household names.
Technological innovation and a flair for marketing enabled Longmore to meet the changing demands of an urbanised market for choice, convenience, cleanliness and a touch of class.
Carlisle Francis Longmore (1882–1956), pharmacist and avid amateur golfer built his fortune on the ‘wonderful tissue building, nourishing, and strengthening properties’ of the humble jelly crystal. In 1923, Longmore launched a three-year advertising and mail-out campaign in the Melbourne Argus promoting White Crow Jelly Crystals as a sophisticated dessert, nutritious food for baby and a restorative for invalids – the latter could rally themselves on sherry, champagne, madeira and port wine flavours.
Readers were urged to mail the advertisement to the company for a free copy of ‘dainty desserts’, reassuringly titled How to Prepare a Dessert that Is Sure to Come out Right: A Book of Exclusive ‘White Crow’ Recipes for Special Occasions. With just one packet of White Crow Jelly Crystals, homemakers could confidently whip up a plum pudding, salmon salad or a delicious table jelly ‘for serving with fowl or lamb’.
Longmore used scaremongering to justify higher prices, with advertisements emphasising that White Crow was ‘prepared on a highly scientific basis’, and warning that the ‘cheap gelatine’ used by his competitors ‘contains arsenic, zinc, lead, and copper’.