Salt and Pepper pots
Date Made/Found: 1965-1975
, 1907 - 1982
Material and Medium: stainless steel and rubber
Dimensions: Overall (Both same size): 100 x 60 x 60mm (3 15/16 x 2 3/8 x 2 3/8in.)
Department: Decorative Art
Accession Number: 2012.133
These salt and pepper shakers were produced by the Sheffield-based Viners company in the late 1960s / early 70s. They were primarily produced for the catering market and are listed in the Viners Houseware International ‘Catering and Industrial Supplies’ catalogue of the period.
The shakers are stamped on the underside with ‘18-8 Stainless Steel Foreign’. 18-8 stainless steel refers to the ratio of metals in the stainless steel alloy: 18% chromium and 8% nickel. ‘Foreign’ indicates that the object was not made in Britain.
Viners were very successful during the 1960s, employing up to 1000 workers and working with high-profile consultant designers such as Gerard Benney and Stuart Devlin, but the firm faced increasing competition from cheap East Asian cutlery imports. To combat this they outsourced some of their manufacture to factories in Hong Kong, Japan and Korea. We can tell from the serial numbers in Viners trade catalogues that this salt and pepper set was made in Japan. Production costs continued to increase and by the mid-1970s much of the company’s cutlery and tableware was being made overseas. Viners eventually went into receivership in 1982 and the Viners name was purchased by the US based Oneida company. 'Viners' goods continue to be made today.