our history

Our History

1905
Florence Butt opens the C.C. Butt Grocery Store in Kerrville. She invests $60 in the business to get started.


1920s
Florence's youngest son, Howard E. Butt takes over the business. He expands the Butt Grocery Company with a new store in Del Rio and another in Laredo.

1940
H-E-B opens its first air-conditioned stores and begins stocking frozen foods. Exclusive brand names also appear, including Village Park and Park Manor. H-E-B opens three stores in San Antonio.


1950s
H-E-B opens its first supermarkets, consolidating a fish market, butcher shop, pharmacy, and bakery under one roof.


1976
The H-E-B Milk Plant opens in San Antonio, becoming the largest milk plant in Texas. H-E-B also operates the state's largest bread bakery.


1990s
H-E-B introduces a new H-E-B Brand, under the concept of "Own Brands." Today more than 11,800 H-E-B Own Brand products have been launched, ranging from eggs and yogurt to personal and sun care items.


1994
H-E-B opens the first Central Market in Austin, featuring a European bakery, deli with meats and cheeses from around the globe, and juice and ice cream bar.


1997
H-E-B expands its business across the border into Mexico with a new store in Monterrey.


2000
H-E-B introduces the H-E-Buddy mascot, delighting children across Texas.


2001
H-E-B enters the Houston market in a Texas-sized way with large-format stores; the first one opens at Fountainview and Westheimer.


2002
H-E-B hosts the first Excellence in Education Awards celebration in San Antonio. Today H-E-B awards more than $600,000 in cash prizes to outstanding educators annually.


2002
H-E-B opens its state-of-the-art Quality Assurance Laboratory, giving the company technologically advanced scientific capabilities. H-E-B is the only retailer in the United States to undertake extensive safety testing of produce and ground beef.


2003
H-E-B ranks sixth in the nation and first in Texas in a Consumer Reports reader's survey of the nation's top conventional supermarkets; the survey is based on price, checkout speed, service, and cleanliness.


2003
H-E-B ranked 10th in the nation among privately held companies based on $11 billion in annual sales, according to Forbes.


2003
H-E-B opened a new $4 million, 14,000-square-foot Transportation Terminal in Weslaco.


2004
H-E-B introduces its new H-E-B plus! concept store in San Juan, Texas. The store provides customers with expanded product and service offerings including extensive music, video, and DVD selections; a larger baby department; dedicated space for grills and grilling supplies; an expanded card and party product section; lawn and garden equipment; electronic and household items; and designated space for "surprise buys."


2004
H-E-B opens a new Houston bakery. This fully automated facility provides fresh breads to the region. The bakery produces an average 153 loaves of bread and 750 buns per minute.


2005
H-E-B celebrates 100 years of serving Texans.


2005
H-E-B opens three H-E-B plus! stores, two of which feature a Texas Backyard garden center.


2006
H-E-B opens its first Latino-focused store, Mi Tienda, in Houston, Texas. Mi Tienda, Spanish for "my store," offers products favored by Hispanic customers, such as piñatas, pan dulce, and pupusas, and is decorated like a Mexican village.


2007
H-E-B opens a warehouse in Weslaco. The Regional Dry Grocery Facility serves the Rio Grande Valley and South Texas regions.


2008
H-E-B is one of the largest food chains in the United States, with annual sales of more than $15 billion operating 307 stores in Texas and Northern Mexico. With over 71,000 employees, H-E-B is the largest privately held company in Texas.


2008
Mi Tienda is named the Best Hispanic Supermarket and Houston Central Market is named the Best Grocery Store by the Houston Press.


2009
H-E-B introduces its own line of H-E-B Corn Chips in Original, Chili Cheese, and Chipotle BBQ flavors.


2010
H-E-B celebrates its 105 years of making a difference in the lives of Texans.


2010
H-E-B opens the Temple Retail Support Center, a 450,000 sq. ft. warehouse and transportation facility, strategically located in the Central Texas Region.


2010
The first Joe V's Smart Shop opens in Houston. This small store offers big savings on meats, produce and groceries.


2010
Progressive Grocer Magazine names H-E-B Retailer of the Year. This award is given on the criteria of industry contribution, industry leadership, achievements with social responsibility and sustainability, community leadership, executive stewardship and corporate culture.