There isn’t a whole lot of middle ground when it comes to the infamous and iconic canned food — you love it or you hate it. But either way, you probably haven’t spent a whole lot of time getting to know the “versatile” meat, as it’s been dubbed by the brand.

And if you’re a lover of canned mystery meats, then you probably find yourself stocking up on Spam every time you’re at the supermarket.

Spam is canned meat that Hormel Foods first produced in 1937. It was created to help people get the protein they needed during World War II, when many foods were scarce (HMSO, 2013).

The meat is made of chopped pork shoulder meat and ham with added salt, water, potato starch, sugar, and sodium nitrite, among other ingredients. Even though the meat was originally made from pork shoulder meat, it is now produced from a mixture of different meats, including pork shoulder and ham and beef, and chicken.

On July 5, Spam celebrates its 85th anniversary. It’s fitting that this comes only a day after the birthday of the United States. The product is up there with Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, and Pizza Hut as one of the most distinctive American brands of all time.

Spam rose to popularity since you can eat it right out of the can, making it a useful product for feeding soldiers during World War II. But according to Spam enthusiasts, eating plain, cold Spam is like eating plain, cold chicken breast. Devotees swear that it lends itself to a variety of culinary deliciousness. For breakfast, try it cubed and pan-fried in a hash with potatoes, peppers, and onions. For dinner, try a thin, grilled slice on top of your favorite burger. (It’s like a bacon substitute!) Got some leftover rice? Dice your Spam and whip up some salty fried rice.

Apparently. More than 7 billion cans have been sold and the product is now available in 41 countries. It is especially popular in Asia and the Pacific Islands, including Hawaii and Guam where, on average, each person consumes 16 tins of Spam each year. McDonald’s in Hawaii even features special Spam menu items.

A museum dedicated to all things Spam is located in Austin, Minnesota, the birthplace of the Spam brand. According to the website, the museum “pays tribute to its presence across the world.” Additional Spam bragging rights: Spam product packaging was donated to the Smithsonian in 1998.

There are plenty of guesses as to what Spam actually stands for: Something Posing As Meat. Specially Processed American Meat. Slimy Processed Anemic Mucus. But what’s the real answer?

According to the brand’s website, we may never know. “The significance of the Spam brand name has long been a subject of speculation. One popular belief says it’s derived from the words ‘spiced ham.’ The real answer is known by only a small circle of former Hormel Foods executives. And probably Nostradamus.”

Watch the video below for more details:

Source: AWM

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.