Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods was founded in 1978, but it wasn’t until several years later that the company hit upon what made its oats, groats and other natural food products so immediately recognizable on supermarket shelves. That’s when the image of Bob Moore, the company’s eponymous founder, began appearing on the packaging.

With his white beard, wire-rimmed glasses, newsboy cap and bolo tie, Moore, who died last week at age 94, was an unlikely style icon whose folksy character seemed to embody the healthy artisanal grains produced by his company in an old mill. in Milwaukie, Oregon.

Moore may not have been a movie star like Paul Newman, whose face similarly adorns Newman’s Own foods, but he became equally recognizable to anyone who has ever pushed a shopping cart down a grains and nuts aisle.

An illustration of Mr. Moore appears on the packaging of each of his brand’s more than 200 products, from husked millet to yellow popcorn, alongside the slogan “For your good health.” The text on Bob’s Red Mill bags and boxes, depicted in household fonts that might have been used to sell dyes in the Old West, includes fragments of found poetry (“golden stream”) and low-key charlatanism (“good source of fiber”) . . The distinctive but unremarkable brand, a piece of modern American culture that falls somewhere between hippie and Norman Rockwell, creates an oasis of calm in crowded supermarkets.

According to company lore, Mr. Moore agreed to be the face of Bob’s Red Mill only after a friend suggested he should use his image on packaging. Unlike the man in Quaker Oats, Mr. Moore had the virtue of being a real person. He came to believe that his image conveyed to buyers that he endorsed the grains, beans, seeds, powders and flours contained in the bags.

The original advertising image, a line drawing created in the 1980s, showed Mr. Moore wearing a white apron and bow tie. In this period, Mr. Moore, then in his 50s, appeared tall and strong, with his hair tied back and a thicker beard. He could have owned a general store in a one-horse town. Later, a more grandfatherly Mr. Moore appears with his trademark cap, which he began wearing for practical reasons.

“His doctor wanted him to protect his head from the sun,” said Cassidy Stockton, a spokeswoman for Bob’s Red Mill. “I don’t know how he decided on the style, but I never saw him wearing any other type of hat. He had them in different colors. The distinctive package, the sky blue, is what he is best known for and his favorite.”

That shade was something that marked the starting point for Mr. Moore, who loved the color red. For photo shoots and promotional events, he typically wore a red vest or jacket. He dressed the same way when he traveled for work, making him easily recognizable in airports and hotel lobbies.

The red vest was not custom-made but ordered from a uniform catalog, Stockton said, and Moore required workers employed by him to wear a red work jacket. Walking the track in his red vest, he blended in and stood out as the guy in charge.

“He was a little bit like Mr. Rogers,” Stockton said, referring to Fred Rogers, the children’s television host. “He would arrive in the morning with his warm coat, hang it up and put on his red vest. The vest was his hoodie with his hoodie. “I’m sure it was comforting for him, since we all have our favorite things.”

As for the ever-present bolo tie, it had a small millstone, quarried from the same quarry that provided the company with its millstones.

Moore didn’t seem to spend much time on his appearance, but he wasn’t ignorant of the role of image either. Janice Dilg, a historian who interviewed Mr. Moore on camera in 2017 for an Oregon State University project, he recalled telling an assistant to make sure he had the signature cap on hand for the day of filming.

“He was aware that he and I were doing something that was going to be public,” Dilg said, adding that Moore wowed her before the interview by giving her a tour of the factory in a golf cart.

“He was a very smart businessman who knew how to use that personality,” he said. “Both to sell his product, and at some level, to help people be healthier. It seemed to me that he was not at all conceited. He was successful. But it was, ‘I’m still just Bob.'”