According to a recent survey, Americans consume a staggering 17 billion quarts of popcorn each year, which works out to about 68 quarts for every individual. Now that should give you a reasonably clear idea about how much popcorn is sold annually. Such is the craze for this light and healthy snack that the keyword phrase ‘which brand of popcorn pops the most’ receives a simply overwhelming 868 searches every day. That’s not all; it has close to 20 web pages dedicated to its cause on Google.
If you think this kind infantile idolatry borders on the bizarre, wait till the first popcorn e books send mouse clicks aflutter.
Think this snack had an inexorable rise to the top? Well, not quite. From humble beginnings when Orville Redenbacher added a whole new zing to the world by introducing popcorn, to the record $1 million sales at the turn of the century, this all-time favorite snack has indeed come a long way.
It jockeyed its way to the frontline when electric popcorn poppers were introduced in the year 1907. One saw an impressive spike in its popularity that transgressed manmade barriers. These machines also provided the much-needed trigger for innovation, and new, crunchier, mouth-watering varieties began to flood the market as a matter of scriptural routine.
The formidable names continued to improvise and ensure that their loyalists gravitated naturally towards them. Microwave popcorn was one such advancement that revolutionized the way the snack was savored. Gourmet popcorn in a variety of delightful flavors and tastes packed in quite a punch at the movies. Low-calorie, fat-free versions caused a hefty drain on the resources of health freaks.
Its hallowed monopoly has helped it become the top-rated fundraiser for the Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts of America.
Topped with butter or drenched in chocolate, popcorn has captured the imagination of America like no other. And its popularity is poised to gallop in only on direction, north.