Mt. Olive Pickle Company was founded in 1926 by a group of local business people who believed creating a new market for area farmers would benefit the whole town. Shikrey Baddour, and his friend George Moore, had gotten things started earlier by attempting to launch a brinestock operation. When that idea fell through, local business people realized that Shikrey was onto something, and the Mt. Olive Pickle Company was established. Visit our history page to read more about how we got started in the 1920’s.
Mt. Olive is headquartered at the famous Corner of Cucumber and Vine in Mount Olive, North Carolina. We’ve been located in North Carolina since our humble beginnings nearly a century ago!
The majority of our cucumbers are from the United States. In fact, about one-third of our cucumbers are from North Carolina. Some specific quantities can’t be found in the United States depending on the season. In those cases, we source our cucumbers from other countries.
Yes! For all of its 90 years, Mt. Olive Pickle’s manufacturing plant has been located in the small Eastern North Carolina town of Mount Olive, North Carolina. Today, most of the fresh cucumbers and peppers that we use in our products are procured in the United States (and one-third of that is sourced in North Carolina). We purchase some abroad for select sizes in quantities that aren’t available in the US, and for fresh cucumbers at times of the year when domestic supplies aren’t available. We have two items, Roasted Red Peppers and Marinated Roasted Red Peppers, that are grown and packed for us in Peru, and these are labeled as Products of Peru.
Mt. Olive has recently converted a significant portion of its product line to safety button caps. This means you should hear an audible “pop” when you first open each jar. These new caps have replaced the clear plastic tamper evident banding that Mt. Olive has used on all of its products for several years.
This conversion means that all Mt. Olive branded products, except our Spears and Sandwich Stuffer items, are now packed with the new safety button cap. The new caps are marked for consumers with the words “Do not purchase if safety button is up.”
Eliminating the tamper evident banding and moving to a safety button cap lessens packaging waste while still maintaining the safety of these products. It also enables Mt. Olive to operate more efficiently by removing a step in the manufacturing process.
The tamper evident banding, a clear plastic ring around the top of each jar, will remain on the company’s line of Spears and Sandwich Stuffers. This is because sealing these jars with a button cap requires a much stronger vacuum than is currently used. Stronger vacuums on some fresh pack cut products negatively impact the product quality once opened. Jars with tamper evident bands may or may not pop, but they should be reasonably difficult to open for the first time.
We have also removed the tamper evident bands from our jalapeno and banana pepper items. Because of the impact on product quality, we do not pack these with the new button caps. These products are vacuum sealed. These jars should also be reasonably difficult to open the first time, and consumers should hear either a “pop” or a “whoosh” of air.
Occasionally we hear from our customers who find a pickle – usually a spear – that appears to have a “bite mark” in it, teeth marks and all. It’s certainly unsettling! But the culprit isn’t human. It’s one of our machines, pictured in the video.
A small cylinder holds the pickle in place while the ends are cut off. Watch the pickle on the left: If the pickle gets stuck or doesn’t move on promptly like it should, the cylinder comes back down and actually punches a hole. When this damaged pickle is cut into a spear, it looks very much like a bite somewhere in the middle. The video is shown in almost real time – about one pickle per second.
You’ll find the “Best By Date” stamped on the shoulder of the jar, on the glass itself, near where it curves into the lid. Just above this is a production code.
By the way, we have a 24-month date on our cut products, and a 30-month date on everything else. Because of the way we make our pickles, they do not spoil over time. They may just get a little darker in color and soften up. If you have a jar past its “Best By Date” there’s no harm in trying it for taste and texture. If it still tastes fine, enjoy!
Hurricanes, storms, and power outages happen! Such conditions can knock out power for hours, if not days. Once power is restored and you’re cleaning out the refrigerator, don’t toss the pickles! Pickles and pickled peppers won’t spoil or otherwise pose a health threat even if left unrefrigerated for a period of time. They can sometimes ferment – meaning the juice will turn cloudy and the pickles will eventually darken and get soft. If this occurs, just toss them out, as the flavor and texture will be off. Otherwise, enjoy your pickles!
Your opened jar of pickles doesn’t need to go back in the refrigerator immediately. Sit back, relax, enjoy your snack. But after a few hours, an opened jar of pickles should go back in the refrigerator.
Many of our items are! We cracked the code and perfected pickle fermenting to deliver delicious goodness to your taste buds.
The crunch of the pickle largely depends on when the cucumbers are picked! Cucumbers picked at the height of ripeness, paired with the right ingredients and brine, lead to a perfectly crisp and crunchy pickle.
Yes! We now bottle our pickle juice in 2 oz. bottles (in 3- and 18- packs) and in 64 oz. jugs. Look for the new Mt. Olive Juicers in a store near you!
Mt. Olive products contain NONE of the following items:
- Nuts, Peanuts, Tree Nuts
Mt. Olive does not currently offer public tours of its plant. However, we have a dill-lightful little gift shop at our headquarters that the public is welcomed to visit. While at the gift shop, ask to see our 15-minute tour video which shows how we make our pickles.
You’ll receive a visitor pack and a free jar of pickles! You can also take pictures at the most famous corner in Eastern North Carolina: the Corner of Cucumber & Vine. Gift shop hours are 8AM – 5PM each weekday.
Our 55-gallon barrels are not available for sale to the general public. We recommend you contact Jonathan Jones at (919) 921-0967 for information about purchasing barrels.