Saturday, June 2, 2012

A Day Late and a Dollar Short

Richie advised me on Thursday that Friday was the start of National Donut Weekend.  Accordingly, he went to our local mom 'n pop shop and bought a pair of apple crisps.  "Here's to the police!" he said as he bit in.

Had he read his information a little more carefully, he would have known to go to a Dunkin' Donuts or Krispy Kream where he had a shot at a free donut on Friday.  It's National Donut Day (first Friday in June) not Weekend.

I thought it was an unlikely holiday, so I looked it up.  In 1917, during WW1, the Salvation Army took an interest in "our boys" and sent a fact-finding group to France to see how the Army could be of help.  Consensus was to establish canteens and serve baked goods, hot coffee and writing supplies and stamps. 

Trying to bake in a "hut" near an Army base was not practical, so they turned to donuts.  Margaret Sheldon, a volunteer, wrote home, "Today I baked 22 pies, made 300 donuts and served 700 cups of coffee."  They certainly weren't sitting around on their hands!

Today, donuts are a nearly $700 million business in the United States.  The average donut shop sells $757 worth of donuts per week.  This is a 5.1% increase from 2010 to 2011.  Projections are that donuts will become an $11.6 billion (billion) dollar industry in 2012.  So much for cutting back!  The trend now, in a modest nod to good nutrition, is for smaller donuts with fewer calories and less fat, but despite the smaller size, donut prices will go up -- the cost of the yeast necessry to manufacture donuts is rising. 

So we all don't miss a chance at a freebie, Krispy Kreme celebrates its 75th birthday in July, 2012.  Keep an eye peeled for the exact date. 

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