The History of SPAM the Miracle Meat

The History of SPAM the Miracle Meat

Posted in the Monahans Forum


Irving, TX

#1 Dec 3, 2007
SPAM, possibly a contraction of "spiced ham", was named by actor Kenneth Daigneau, the brother of R. H. Daigneau, a former Hormel Foods vice president. When other meatpackers started introducing similar products, Jay C. Hormel decided to create a catchy brand name to give his spiced ham an unforgettable identity, offering a $100 prize to the person who came up with a new name. At a New Year's Eve Party in 1936, Daigneau suggested the name SPAM.
Jay C. Hormel, son of the company's founder, was determined to find a use for several thousand pounds of surplus pork shoulder. He developed a distinctive canned blend of chopped pork and ham known as Hormel spiced ham that didn't require refrigeration.
SPAM luncheon meat was hailed as the "miracle meat," and its shelf-stable attributes attracted the attention of the United States military during World War II. By 1940, 70 percent of Americans had tried it, and Hormel hired George Burns and Gracie Allen to advertise SPAM on their radio show.
100 million pounds of SPAM were issued as a Lend-Lease staple in the rations to American, Russian, and European troops during World War II, fueling the Normandy Invasion. GIs called SPAM "ham that failed the physical." General Dwight D. Eisenhower confessed to "a few unkind words about it - uttered during the strain of battle."
Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, as a young woman of 18 working in her family's grocery store, remembers SPAM as a "wartime delicacy."
In Khrushchev Remembers, Nikita Khrushchev credited SPAM for keeping the Soviet Army alive during World War II. "We had lost our most fertile, food-bearing lands, the Ukraine and the Northern Caucasians. Without SPAM, we wouldn't have been able to feed our army."

Since: May 07

Concord, NC

#2 Dec 3, 2007
You just ain't lived til you've had a SPAM and gubment cheeze sammich!

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