Archive for the ‘Lushus Jelly’ Category

A Dated Pastime

In Bliss detergent, Card games, Coopers Fresh Aire, Crest Fine Foods, D H Brown & Son Ltd, Foodstuffs (NZ) Ltd, Four Square, Four Square Supermarkets, Games, Gregg & Co, Gregg's, Grocery Archaeology, Lushus Jelly, Marmite, Mono wax paper, N W Stevens, Nugget shoe polish, Rawakelle tea, Reckitt and Colman, Red Band Biscottes, Sanitarium Health Foods, The Kiwi Polish Co Ltd, Vi-Max cereal, Vita-Brits cereal on March 20, 2013 at 10.46

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - FOUR SQUARE copy WM copy

Note: Due to repetitive theft by those who take my intellectual property from this blog without my permission, and reproduce it as merchandise for sale on sites such as Ebay, Redbubble and Trade Me,  I have now watermarked some images. If you are interested in purchasing merch of my designs you can head to my personal Redbubble store.


Trying to date items can be a difficult prospect but I am quite good at it – I have a sort of “sixth sense” when it comes to this task. I set myself to it by “zooming in”- I kind of squint my eyes, and really focus hard. It takes a while but I can usually get an item down to a three year period, and sometimes even down to the correct year without knowing much about it. I guess it is just being a highly visual person with an almost photographic memory who has been collecting for decades. It goes in and pretty much just lodges there forever. Apparently I have “a mind like a steel trap”. Which can be a great thing – but on the other hand, there are events you’d probably rather forget. Anyway, moving right along…

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s -MARMITE copy WM copy

As much as I have a vast storehouse in my cranium (although I still think I know very little and have a lot to learn) and a huge collection of images and books to draw on – sometimes it is just no help.

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - VITA-BRITS copy WM copy

Point in case is this snap set that Foodstuffs (N.Z. ) Ltd , owner of many brands which I previously covered here, issued as a (presumably) give-away promotional item – something they did a lot of to promote their business over the years (I cover all that in the linked article). Back in the day all kinds of card games were a very popular pastime. I’m not sure when they started to fall out of favour, but I’m taking a guess at the early 1980s – coincidentally around the time that computer games popularised – small hand-held consoles like Donkey Kong were a “must have” for us kids and probably the death knell of more manual entertainment.

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - MONO copy WM copy

This particular set was issued for Four Square supermarkets – but this is not the only promotional card set they did – there were two happy families sets over the years – one which I think was done in the late 1950s (I’ll get to that further on) and another one around 1981 (which I have posted on a few times over the last couple of years as I make my way through restoring and exploring each set).

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - BLISS copy WM copy

Anyway, with the one I showcase here – I am really not sure on exactly when it was produced – you would think with over ten different products it would not be so hard to work out with their combined company histories. Not the case.

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - VI-MAX copy WM copy

Many of these products had already been around for decades and had changed little – subtle adjustments to packaging can be a good indicator of dates. However the design of Nugget polish featured, for instance – is of little help when it comes to narrowing the date as the design was barely modified over decades and was in use through the 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s and into the early 1960s.

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - RAWAKELLE copy WM copy

One telling point which helps me “arrange” the timeline is that Foodstuffs issued one of the happy families game sets around this time – I believe for a number reasons just previous to the snap set coming out.

4 square happy families cards early 1960s 1961-1967 (2) copy

Some of the cards from the slightly earlier happy families set issued by foodstuffs in the late 1950s, but featuring many of the same products.


four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - RED BAND copy WM copy

Why do I think that? Because unlike the snap set – it features three products that have some clues that help me date it as such – and those are Crest canned foods, Jojo jelly crystals, and Rawakelle tea.

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - GREGG'S copy WM copy

I know that Crest Fine Foods was sold in 1959 and the logo was being changed very shortly before that date. In fact I have some of the labels where the art department for Butland Industries has painted out the old logo and pasted a new one over it – so “in transition” at this point. The happy families set shows the old logo . A photo of a Woolworths store of 1964 shows the logo fully changed over. The snap set shows the new logo as well as a completely new can design for tinned peaches.

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - CREST copy WM copy

Also, Rawakelle tea, which is also featured, was like Pam’s a Four Square/ Foodstuffs (New Zealand) Limited brand that was launched in 1957 . Jojo jelly, also featured, was launched in 1958 by N W Stevens/The Kiwi Polish Co Ltd that also produced Lushus (many baby boomers will remember this very popular jelly crystal brand) as well as a number of other desserts.

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - COOPER FRESHAIRE copy WM copy

So the happy family set was produced after 1957 and likely before 1960.

And where does that put me with dating the snap set?

four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - NUGGET copy WM copy

The snap set features a new design for Crest peaches so that’s my cut-off date on the lower end of the scale. It’s also worth noting that in the meantime since the happy families set had been issued – the Rawakelle packet had been the recipient of a makeover – but not wildly different. the only 1960s image I have seen of Cooper’s Fresh Aire is a  January 1962 ad  in which the can design seems to have been revised from what appears on the snap card. The product was definitely available by 1961 as exemplified by an ad in the New Zealand Film archive. This was still quite early days for television and the fact that they went to the effort to make an ad in this medium indicates it was a new product on the market and they wanted to make a splash.

snap box  copy

Outside of the early 1960s snap set box, a bit worse for wear.


four square snap late 1950s-early 1960s - SNAP WM copy

So in summary, I would date the snap set at some time between 1960 and January 1962. That gives us the answer – probably 1961. If you asked me on first glance to pick an era, I would have said 1950s. If you showed me the two together, I would say that the snap set was issued before the other. But it goes to show if you really concentrate and try to figure it out with some information that has been gathered to help – the facts don’t lie!

All content of Longwhitekid copyright Darian Zam © 2013. All rights reserved.


Coupon Conquest

In Competition, Coupons, Crosse & Blackwell, Fropax frozen foods, Griffin’s, H. H. Brandon mail order, Kiwi Bacon Company, Linella Delight, Linnell & Co Ltd, Lushus Jelly, N W Stevens Ltd, NZ Big Swap, Rattray & Sons Ltd, Roma tea, Steelo, Sunshine, Sunshine Jelly, Taniwha laundry soap, Tiger Tea, Trinidad fruit juice, Tucker, Velvet laundry soap, Woppa Swappa on June 23, 2012 at 10.46

I previously wrote about “Big Swap” coupons here in September 2011. Finally I was able to purchase my own set a couple of weeks ago, after missing out numerous times over the past five years – and get a really good look at them. I didn’t realize that the Lushus Jelly coupon was missing from the set when I bought them until I was about to post – so I had to quickly recreate the artwork for it to match the rest of them.

North Island mail order catalogue from company H H Brandon, advertising the N Z Big Swap, 1954. Courtesy of the Turnbull Library collection, Reference Number: Eph-B-RETAIL-1954-01-16/17


There’s some products that have become classics in the time that has lapsed over the decades (such as Griffin’s biscuits) and also some I have never seen before . Trinidad Juice was a new one for me. It appears that it’s still going – a Trinidad and Tobago-based brand that was launched in 1930. I can’t find any information on Linella at all – perhaps it was their one and only product and disappeared off the market after a few years. Linnell & Co Ltd were a Hawera-based company and the product, containing butter and eggs – was essentially that Antipodean classic lemon cheese, except Linella came in Orange and Banana flavours as well as Lemon Delight. That’s all I know.

It’s possible the “Big Swap” competition was the promotional brainchild of mail order company H H Brandon, but not entirely – as squinting I can make out that the endeavour was sponsored by “The Auckland Public Relations Office” (office of what it doesn’t specify). Previously I stated that these were “Big Swap” coupons from 1954, but in fact when I take a closer look at these and compare them to what’s in the Alexander Turnbull manuscript and pictorial and collection – they may not be.

Some of mine are the same (Steelo, Sellotape, Lushus, Taniwha) as the “Big Swap” set, and some are different (Berger, Kiwi, Gilbey’s). So I am afraid that what I wrote previously may be incorrect – it seems upon closer examination the ones I have purchased may not be the same, they were possibly called “Woppa Swappa”, and were issued for a similar competition. Linnell states on the back of their advertising coupon, a competition for their company closing on the date January 14, 1955 – so that pretty much solves the mystery about any dates – they must have been issued later the same year as the “Big Swap” competition. It will be interesting to see if any other versions turn up. Still, it’s a nice little snapshot of some of the household products of the time.



Addendum early Sept 2012: After having an on-going “maybe I’m wrong again. No, actually, I think I AM right…no, maybe not, after all…” conversation with myself for some time, I actually discovered that my theorizing is in fact RIGHT. Since I wrote this article I have turned up at least two more competitions that issued some, or all, as well as additional coupons during  that decade. There was a  promotion in 1957 that was called “The Big Y Swopper” and was sponsored by the Optimists Club of the YMCA in Christchurch. Also, again in 1954 – was a competition named  “Jaycee Swap’em”, under the auspices of the  Wellington Junior Chamber of Commerce. I have never seen another example of these yet. The full sheet set of the latter, totalling 44 coupons, is in the Turnbull manuscript and pictorial collection in Wellington:

“Jaycee Swap’em” competition, by Wellington Junior Chamber of Commerce, 1954. Alexander Turnbull Library. Ref: Eph-D-RETAIL-1954-01


Addendum mid Jan 2014: A Dunedin collector and reader of this blog kindly sent these images to me as a contribution the article. These arrived some months ago and I haven’t had time for quite a while to do all the updates I need to get around to. This is a set of coupons from the “Swoppers” competition, published in Christchurch in 1957 (Possibly this is “The Big Y Swopper” mentioned earlier). This set again has some repeat designs of others, proving that all the competitions were somehow linked, but what exactly the common factor associating them was, apart for the obvious fundraising/charity aspect- I am not sure. However this set is more focussed on local business but does showcase a few household products.

The only exception is the Forestry Service “Keep New Zealand Green” coupon which is yet another missing one from my “Big Swap” set at the top of the article. I just placed it in the middle of the “Swoppers” set to keep things kind of tidy.  I wonder how many others there are that I don’t know about? And how many other competitions there were around the country during that period? Like the “Jaycee Swap’em” coupons, I’ve never seen another example of the “Swoppers.” Whereas, more regularly Big Swap” coupons come up for auction, and by “regularly” I actually mean about once a year or so (but rarely a full set).  All following images are courtesy of Owain Morris collection.

Swoppers coupons - Christchurch 1957  2 copy Swoppers coupons - Christchurch 1957  3 copy Swoppers coupons - Christchurch 1957 1 copy


Addendum mid June 2015: Evidence that people were actively swapping in an organised manner, to complete collections. This clipping from the Otago Dunedin Times, December 1 1973. Image courtesy of Owain Morris collection.

Whopper Swappers ODT Otago Dunedin Times December 1 1973



All content of Longwhitekid copyright Darian Zam © 2014. All rights reserved.

All content of Longwhitekid copyright Darian Zam © 2014. All rights reserved.