It's not every day you get to visit a museum devoted to canned luncheon meat. Kudos to Hormel for creating a fun and entertaining attraction in the heart of Minnesota.
As most of you know, Spam is a brand of canned cooked pork. It was first released in 1937. Spam quickly became popular because of it's ability to be shipped to remote destinations without spoilage, as evidenced by its widespread use in World War II. Later the name was also applied to unwanted email, something the Hormel folks aren't too crazy about.
Spam (the meat product) is something people either seem to love or hate. Someone who loves Spam is Pheymont, one of the Gumbo Gurus of our website. This post is dedicated to him, with my recommendation that he get to Minnesota and empty the Spam Museum's Gift shop.
Last weekend's One Clue Mystery photo (below) featured a different angle on the farmer taking his piggies to the Hormel plant (compared with the photo featured above). It was recognized by Professor Abe and George G -- congratulations to both.
The Spam Museum is located in the small city of Austin, home of the Hormel Foods Corp and canning plant. It's a free museum and very CoVid-19 compliant. The museum tells the history of the Hormel company, the origin of Spam, and its place in world culture.
The Spam Museum opened in 1991 in a small mall storefront. The current larger Spam Museum, covering 14,000 sq ft, opened in September 2014.
The museum features a variety of different galleries worth visiting, including a look at Spam's global reach from England to China, but especially to Hawaii and Japan where it is very popular. Recipes from some of these countries are featured. This gallery was especially fun to explore:
A World War II-themed gallery shows how Spam feed the US armed forces.
A gallery features the history of the Hormel company:
Some galleries including games, videos and a Monty Python SPAM sketch.
This English couple traveled to the Spam Museum in Austin to celebrate their wedding....
The central hall highlights the large variety (at least 15) of products under the Spam label.
The Spam gift shop is popular and busy, and adjoins the museum. Here you can buy a variety of Spam and related gift items. In the pre CoVid world, Spam samples (SPAMples) were provided, but these are not currently available.
When you leave, hopefully you'll agree with the following slogan:
It takes an hour or two explore, depending on how much time you spend studying the exhibits, but I highly recommend it.