1. Even though they are commonly just called ˜animal crackers’, their actual name is really ˜Barnum’s Animals Crackers’. The latter is a little more difficult to say (especially with the ˜s’ on animals) so I can see why we’ve resorted to the shorter version.

2. Despite the name, it is reported that Barnum & Bailey’s Circus never received any payment for the product, nor do they now. This seems rather strange because it is clear that the name is reminiscent of the animals in the circus baring the same name.

3. Another thing that seems to go against their name is the fact that animal crackers actually have more in common with a cookie than a cracker. In fact some people have debated on whether or not they can even be called a cracker. I personally see them as cookies myself, but you are entitled to whatever opinion you choose.

4. Animal-shaped cookies have been around since the early 1800s in Europe. It’s actually believed that the first appearance of the classic cookie was made in England. This is long before Nabisco (at the time named the National Biscuit Company) jumped on the bandwagon and introduced the cookies as we know and love them today over one hundred years ago.

5. There seems to be a debate over just how many animals have been represented by a cookie since their inception in 1902. Some claim that there have been a total of 53 different animals while others place the number at 37. I have been unable to find a reliable source to prove if either one of these numbers is even correct.

6. The current cookie-count regarding different animal shapes in boxes today is 19. These include: 2 bears (one sitting and one standing), a bison, a camel, a cougar, an elephant, a giraffe, a gorilla, a hippo, a hyena, a kangaroo, a koala bear, a lion, a monkey, a rhinoceros, a seal, a sheep, a tiger and a zebra.

7. The only animals to make it through the entire lifetime of Barnum’s Animals Crackers are bears, elephants, lions and tigers. Some species have seemingly gone extinct over the years.

8. As of now, rabbits have never found their way into a box of animal crackers made by Nabisco.

9. For the cracker’s 100th anniversary, a survey was asked as to which animal shape the public would like to see added into the mix. The choices were: koala bear, penguin, walrus or cobra. The koala bear won with the cobra coming in last place.

10. It seems that with this certain type of cookie, we’ve acquired a certain way of eating them. Studies have shown that nearly everyone bites the heads off their animal crackers first before finishing off the rest.
11. The string on the box wasn’t put there to carry the box around like a purse, despite lots of people thinking so and using it for this very purpose. It was actually brought out with a special ˜Christmas’ packaging and it was thought the string could be used to hang the boxes off your Christmas tree.

12. Around six thousand miles of string is used annually on Animal Cracker boxes.

13. Every hour, Nabisco’s factory in Fair Lawn, New Jersey makes 300,000 more of these fun-to-eat cookies, which ends up being around 40 million boxes a year. This is the only Nabisco factory in America that makes this special treat.

14. Even though broken pieces can usually be found in the box, if you try and match them up, you will almost always end up with complete cookies.

15. Shirley Temple sang about animal crackers: “Animal crackers in my soup; monkeys and rabbits loop the loop; gosh, oh, gee, but I have fun” in the film ˜Curly Top’ (1935).