Wed, October 29, 2014

Canned Salmon in Your Local Grocery – Prize Winners!

From time to time in the heyday of canned salmon, say about 1900 to 1960, the packers would sponsor contests to generate interest and boost sales. Recipe contests proved especially popular among consumers, and by requiring entrants to submit their handwritten salmon recipes on the reverse sides of labels the packers developed a rudimentary method for tracking which brands were more popular with certain demographics.

Another favorite was the “salmon display contest” for grocers in which cash prizes were awarded for the best in-store presentation of the product.

Here is the $250 grand prize winner in the 1939 contest, the Self-Service Grocery in Independence, Kansas (click on images to see larger versions):

grand prize


And the 2nd place entrant, Vaughan’s Food Stores of Cleveland, Tennessee:

2 prize

According to the packing companies who sponsored the contest, “One dealer said his display had brought more salmon sales in a week than he had had for the previous two months, and others noted double the volume of previous sales.” (Pacific Fisherman, May 1939, pp. 19-21)