SPAM® Musubi at Powell Street Festival
This is the eight consecutive year that we will be selling SPAM® Sushi or SPAM® Musubi at the Powell Street Festival. It is referred as SPAM® Musubi in Hawaii where it is extremely popular. Mususbi is known in the Shintō religion as the power of becoming or creation. Hawaiians have a love affair with SPAM® – they eat it as a delicacy, adding it to soups and stews, treating it as a side dish for breakfast, and enjoying it as the main event for lunch and dinner. Residents of Hawaii consume more SPAM® than populations anywhere else in the world: more than four million cans every year, or an average twelve cans of SPAM® per person per year. In fact, Hawaii is so well associated with SPAM® that Hormel even introduced a limited edition “Hawaii can” in 2003.
The Hormel Company, in Austin, Minnesota, developed America’s first canned ham in 1926. After the hams were cut, the company was left with thousands of pounds of nearly worthless pork shoulder. Jay C. Hormel, son of Hormel founder George A. Hormel, developed the ideas of using the pork shoulder in a new product called “Hormel Spiced Ham.” Since the name was rather uninspiring, a contest was held at a New Year’s Eve party for a new name with a $100 prize to the winner. The winning name was the name it goes by today – SPAM®. Kenneth Daigneau, an actor and the brother of a Hormel vice president Ralph Daigeau, won the contest.
During World War II, sales of SPAM® soared. In part because it requires no refrigeration, SPAM® was perfect for the military and became a standard K-ration for U.S. soldiers. Military personnel introduced it in Hawaii and elsewhere. As in previous years, we are located in the JCCA Salmon Barbeque booth. From a very modest beginning, sales have increased annually and many of our customers look forward to this treat. We are very grateful to Hormel Foods for their generous donations of SPAM® products, attire and publicity materials that have helped contribute to the JCCA Human Rights Committee’s fundraising efforts.
The JCCA will once again be selling SPAM® Sushi along with the everpopular salmon BBQ. Prices are $3 for one piece.