Mr Four Square origin and history


Mr Four Square is the famous smiling logo for the Four Square stores that have conveniently served the local communities and towns around New Zealand for the past 81 years.  Locals, visitors, overseas tourists and especially kids all love our very friendly Mr Four Square.

In July 1922, J. Heaton Barker, the founder of Foodstuffs, called together members of the Auckland Master Grocers Association to discuss the formation of a co-operative buying group of independent grocers.  The aim was to counter the activities of grocery chain stores who were making life very difficult for independent grocers.  The name Four Square emerged when Mr Barker, while talking on the phone, drew a square around the 4 of the date on his calendar.  He immediately realised he had a suitable name for the buying group, stating that "they would stand 'Four Square' to all the winds that blew".


By the end of 1924 products were appearing under the Four Square name, and by 1929, discussions were underway on the use of a common branding on stores and early versions of the Four Square sign were produced.  During the 1950s the Foodstuffs advertising department designed the famous Four Square man, who eventually became a nationally recognised icon, remaining famous to this day.




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