The Early Years.
Two brothers, Israel and Max Garelick, founded Garelick Brothers Farms in 1931. Israel and Max borrowed $10,000 to buy their first farm in rural Franklin, Massachusetts. They started their business buying and selling cattle, but soon grew to milking cows and selling their milk.
By the early 1940s, Garelick Brothers Farms was homogenizing, pasteurizing and delivering their bottled milk to homes in southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island. In 1947, Max and Israel ended their partnership and Israel incorporated the company with his son Daniel and his son-in-law, Paul Bernon. Over the next ten years, the Garelick Brothers Farms grew their home delivery business to 15,000 homes. In the 1960s, the company began to provide their fresh dairy products to even more families as they began to sell their milk in supermarkets.
In the short span of just three years, from 1968-1970, the Garelick Farms family suffered the loss of all three principals of the company — Israel, Daniel, and Paul. Elinor Bernon, Israel's daughter, stepped in to assume the presidency of the company and become one of the first women to head a dairy company of its size. During her tenure as President, the firm began producing numerous store brands in addition to its Garelick Farms line of products. In 1971, Elinor married Larry Zelkind and he joined the company as its third President. Elinor assumed the role of Chairman of the Board.
Elinor's sons Alan and Peter Bernon joined the company full time after completing college in the mid 1970's. For the next two decades, the brothers worked closely together to build and expand the business. Larry Zelkind retired in 1985, and Peter and Alan assumed control of the company. In the following years, in addition to purchasing a number of regional dairies, the brothers began and later expanded a business making plastic containers. They also entered the spring water business with the acquisition of Miscoe Springs.
Both the dairy and plastic businesses continued to grow, and in 1997 Suiza purchased Garelick Farms from the Bernons. In 2001, Suiza purchased Dean Foods, and Alan Bernon became COO of the Northeast Region.
Today, Garelick Farms operates four production facilities and employs 1,600 people. Our facilities in Franklin and Lynn, Massachusetts, Bangor, Maine, and Rensselaer, New York manufacture a wide variety of fresh, delicious dairy products including New England’s favorite chocolate milk and the award-winning Over the Moon milk.