April 18 is National Animal Cracker Day, and we know that just makes you smile. The bite-sized crackers have been around for over a century, and they’re still amongst everyone’s favorites! Here’s what you need to know about this authentic national holiday.
Animal crackers are the product of the Industrial Revolution of the 19th century. For the first time, an automated rotating mold could shape cracker dough in various forms and figures fast and cheaply.
The pretty one-bite-sized crackers became increasingly popular and soon traveled from England to America, where local entrepreneurs began crafting their own animal crackers. First by Stauffer’s Biscuit Company, in Pennsylvania, 1871, and then in New York by a company that would later become the National Biscuit Company, Nabisco.
April 18 is National Animal Crackers Day. And it’s a celebration of more than cookies. Animal Crackers have shaped our customs and traditions, gave countless generations of small kids joy, and more recently helped change the way we see animals’ role in circuses.
There have been 53 different animals portrayed in the crackly dough, and they’re enjoyed in 17 countries worldwide. Between Nabisco and others, they sell 17 million animal crackers every year.
There’s no doubt animal crackers are a cultural phenomenon. They’re part of our history and everyday lives. The circus-themed boxes, popularized by Nabisco, are engraved in our minds, and for many, animal crackers are still the go-to ornament for the Christmas tree.
Whether you like Stauffer’s or Nabisco’s, there’s no doubt animal crackers are here to stay. Now that they have their own national day, there are more reasons to celebrate inventive snacks than ever. Let’s show animal crackers some love — they’re more than snacks, they’re history!
History of National Animal Crackers Day
Although the origin of the National Animal Crackers day is unknown, it is widely suggested Nabisco, a renowned producer of animal crackers, lobbied for its establishment as part of the 100th anniversary of the cookies, celebrated in 2002.
There’s also a possibility that National Animal Crackers day has something to do with the release of the Mondelez International campaign in 2018 to show the biscuit animals in their natural habitat instead of in a zoo or circus.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) played a part in this campaign, too, which coincidentally played out one year after the Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus closed its tent for good.
Either way, we’re thankful for such a fun day. Any excuse for making us remember our childhood memories is always welcomed. Even if it’s a marketing stunt. The world’s most popular crackers just had to have a National Day. Don’t you agree?
How to Celebrate National Animal Crackers Day
Head on to your nearest convenience store and get yourself a box of animal crackers. Share this tasty tradition with the young ones and pass the habit of enjoying these fun crackers to the next generation!
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