Hailman's new owners of Mrs. Fisher's Potato Chips in Rockford.
For the first time since its original owner sold the iconic potato chip company more than a half-century ago, Mrs. Fisher's Inc. is being run by a Mrs. again.
Longtime employee Roma Hailman and her husband, Mark Hailman, bought the potato-chip maker Aug. 17 for an undisclosed amount. Chuck, Pete and Paul DiVenti ran the company for the past 29 years before retiring.
The new owners say they plan to keep up the 75-year-old tradition of making chips in Rockford, a tradition that’s been passed down through employee owners since Ethel Fisher sold the business to route driver Sylvester Hahn in 1949.
Chip makers in the Rock River Valley
* Rockford-based Ole Salty’s makes chips at its 3131 Summerdale Ave. plant.
* Chicago-based C.J. Vitner’s runs a potato-chip factory in Freeport.
* Altona Co. in Freeport makes Mrs. Mikes Potato Chips.
* Snack-maker Frito-Lay is the largest employer in Beloit, Wis.
* Oregon-based Kettle Foods makes gourmet chips at a Beloit plant.
* TH Foods produces rice chips from a Loves Park plant for health-food stores.