A married couple, Melanija and Stanko Žargi, set up a mustard factory with Franc Kham, owner of a well-known delicatessen near the Slovenian Philharmonic in Ljubljana, which they named after their daughter Meta – ETA for short. A year later, Kham and Žargi set up a tomato canning plant, Scedep, in Graben, which soon joined the ETA parent company
The company was renamed ETA, d. z o. z. It employed only five to seven workers and, according to data from 1936, produced 12,000kg of mustard a year. For comparison, let us look back to 1965, when ETA already employed around 300 workers and produced 440 tonnes of mustard.
From the very beginning, the small family-run ETA factory produced all the legendary products for which it is still known today, especially mustard, various types of jams, compotes and pickled vegetables – especially pickled cucumbers. ETA’s mustard was already highly valued at the time, so much that it was even exported.
After nationalisation in the new socialist state, in 1948 all food companies from the Kamnik area were merged into a single Kamnik Food Industry. In addition to ETA, this group included the Triglav Pasta Factory from Šmarca and Kvasarna (yeast factory) from Mengeš.
ETA moved to new premises on Kajuhova Street, where it still is today. From the 1960s to the 1980s, the company also used seasonal workers, and during the golden age of the industry in Kamnik, many young men and women from Kamnik and the surrounding area worked at various jobs with the company, often gaining their first work experience.
In the 1960s, the Talis bottling plant and vinegar factory was established near Maribor, while at the other end of Slovenia, in the village of Renče in the Primorska Region, the local company Varikina also created a brand of vinegar called Renški hram, which was led by a visionary entrepreneur Stanko Weitzer.
Eta has been majority-owned by Mercator, d.d., Ljubljana for 20 years. In Murska Sobota, the company Proconi, d.o.o. was founded, and within a year, a new production plant was built on 3,000m2, which meets the highest quality standards. Export difficulties of the ETA brand, particularly in Spain, led to the creation of the Natureta brand, which we still manage today.
PS Mercator sold the company to new owners, but they did not stay for more than a year, and in 2012, Eta was bought by a strategic owner who still owns Eta today. Meanwhile, the French company Fleury Michon took over the ownership of Proconi in Murska Sobota and created the ready-to-eat food brand Pogrej & pojej.
Bohova plant was closed down, and since then all the activities have been carried out exclusively in Kamnik. On our new independent path, we proudly continue our noble tradition of producing high-quality food products, renewing our technological equipment and developing new trendy products.
In 2018, ETA acquired the TALIS and Renški hram vinegar brands and moved the entire production, including the oak barrels for aging the vinegars, from Renče to Kamnik and started bottling the vinegars. In 2021, ETA acquired Proconi, which became our business unit, keeping its full production capacity, including ready-to-eat meals Pogrej & pojej. The story of four strong brands continues...