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The current logo of Marich. Marich Confectionery was founded in 1983 by Richard Shaffer and Marinus van Dam, creator of the Jelly Belly. At age 15, with his father in a concentration camp for Dutch resistance during World War II, Marinus started to work as a janitor in a candy factory in Rotterdam to help support his family. Management took note of his interest, abilities and skills, and sent him to a Dutch candy technology school where he proceeded to graduate with several degrees. He immigrated to the United States in 1957. Once in the United States, he spent most of his early career working for Herman Goelitz, Inc., where he invented a number of signature candies, including the Jelly Belly. Contents 1 Company history 2 Product Range 2.1 Chocolate covered fruit 2.2 Chocolate covered nuts 3 External links 4 References Company history After working for others for nearly a lifetime, Marinus founded Marich Confectionery in 1983 in Watsonville, California.[1] While he was the clear guiding force of Marich, there were a few co-founders that have continued to the present, including Ron, Von, and Lon Packard.[2] Marinus also employed his two sons, Brad van Dam, who was then in college, and Troy van Dam, still in high school, who began their careers at Marich. In Watsonville, Marinus invented a series of delicious chocolates consisting of chocolate covered dried fruits. The first was the chocolate covered dried cherry with pastel cherry coating.[3] In late 1992, Marich introduced the chocolate covered dried blueberry[4] to the confectionery market. These were the start that led to many more chocolate covered fruit products that have found widespread appeal in the marketplace. In 1995 Marich was recognized for its leadership in shaping the gourmet chocolate market.[5] In 2001, Marich received the International Fancy Food Show award for the creation of the chocolate covered dried cherry, then considered a classic.[6] While in Watsonville, Marich had expanded and was spread between 3 separate buildings. So in 1997, it acquired its own land in Hollister, California, built a consolidated 55,000 sq ft (5,100 m2) manufacturing facility, and moved. Soon before the move, Marinus died. Prior to his passing, his son Brad[7] was installed as the new CEO of Marich, and his son Troy was installed as the new COO. In 2006, Marich added 20,000 sq ft (1,900 m2) to its manufacturing plant to meet demands for its products.[8] Brad van Dam was elected to serve on the Board of Directors of NASFT, which sponsors the biannual International Fancy Food & Confection Shows. Product Range Below are some of the gourmet chocolate products that Marich creates: Chocolate covered fruit Chocolate covered blueberries Chocolate covered cherries Chocolate covered strawberries Chocolate covered peaches Chocolate covered apricots Chocolate covered raisins Chocolate covered razzcherries Chocolate covered blackberries Chocolate covered cranberries Chocolate covered raspberries Chocolate covered pears Chocolate covered nuts Cappuccino almonds Chocolate toffee almonds Mint chocolate almonds White Jordan almonds Milk chocolate pecans Double dipped macadamias Milk chocolate cashews Milk chocolate pistachios Milk chocolate peanuts Chocolate toffee pistachios Chocolate toffee hazelnuts External links Marich Confectionery Company References ^ Marich Confectionery, a Family Tradition - Marich - Gourmet Direct ^ Mr. Mayor's candy factory - Los Altos Town Crier ^ Getting a taste for contract manufacturing / Food Processing Magazine ^ Dried blueberries fill functional gap; Food processors report on how they satisfied consumer appeal for high moisture fruits in cereals, confections and bakery goods. Food Processing Magazine. December 1, 1992 ^ Marich's vision of quality shapes the gourmet market, Tiffany Susan, Candy Industry, November 1, 1995 ^ Sweet Focus, Hanna Aronovich, Food and Drink Magazine ^ Candy man - Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal: ^ http://www.candyindustry.com/content/php?s=CA2006/11&p=3