Since first bursting onto the market way back in 1912, Nabisco has found a ton of success in the creation of Oreos. So many people love to chow down them due in large part to the winning combination of dark wafer cookies and a white cream-filled centre. It’s no wonder that Oreos have been around for well over 100 years! But when your history is as long as Oreos’ is, there’s bound to be more than a few secrets kept from consumers. That shouldn’t be too shocking- after all, you don’t get so incredibly popular without having some secrets. You may be amused, surprised, or taken aback by what you’re about to learn. These are just 10 of the Untold Truths of Oreos that you may not have already known about.
10. Pigs Absolutely HATE Oreos
Pigs are notorious for being omnivores. This means that they’ll eat just about anything that’s put in front of them. Meat, cheese, produce, their owner’s leftovers from last night’s dinner…the list is almost endless! Well- almost. There are still some foods that even a pig won’t eat. Clearly, they have standards when it comes to what they’ll willing to consume. Surprisingly to some, Oreos are among the few food items that pigs will turn their noses up to. This peculiar discovery came about back in 1985 by Ben & Jerry’s- unwittingly, too. Back in the mid-1980s, the popular ice cream company gave their product waste away to a pig farmer near their facilities. The farmer revealed that his pigs liked most flavours, save for one- Mint with Oreo Cookies. That was the lone flavour rejected by his pigs. This fact came from the 1998 book Ben & Jerry’s Double Dip: How to Run a Values Led Business and Make Money, Too (which was written by Ben and Jerry themselves). This is definitely not a fact that many would have expected to learn. Between the unusual source connected to Ben & Jerry’s and the fact that it’s pigs turning down Oreos, it’s certainly a weird fact. But it’s clear that Oreos just aren’t something that pigs enjoy eating- and that’s completely okay.
9. No One Knows How The Name Came To Be
Like a lot of companies, Oreos has tweaked its name many times over the years. There were plenty that they went through- Oreo Biscuits, Oreo Sandwich, Oreo Crème Sandwich, and finally Oreo Chocolate Sandwich Cookie. These days however, the cream-filled wafer cookies are simply known as Oreos. So it’s clear both then and now that Oreos as a name has managed to endure the test of time for over a century! But just how did the Oreos name originally come about? That question is one that no one has ever been able to answer since Nambisco invented the tasty cookie which bears the Oreos name. A TIME article released close to the company’s 100 year anniversary tried to determine the name’s origin, but the search came up empty. One popular theory is that it comes from the French word “or”, which translates to gold. The correlation comes from another little-known fact: the original packaging for Oreos came in the colour gold. Another guess is that it was named after the Greek word for mountain because the test version of these cookies were in shaped like a hill. No one close to Oreos (or Nabisco, for that matter) has ever come out to reveal just how the name came to be. So it’s pretty clear that the rumours and theories of how the name came to be will simply continue to fly left, right, and centre. It seems as though the truth will never come to light.
8. Oreos Are Sold All Around The World
This specific fact may not be seen as not surprising, considering just how popular Oreos are. Some people may have the mistaken notion that Oreos are a sweet treat that are only wildly popular in the Western World. But that actually couldn’t be further from the truth! The truth is that Oreos are available for purchase in well over 100 countries. You read that right- over 100 countries sell Oreos. Of course, that means that there’s far too many countries who sell Oreos to attempt to list them all. But something that may pique your interest is how, depending on which country you’re looking for Oreos in, certain exclusive flavours will be available in just that one country. For example, Argentina carries Dulche de Leche Oreos; China has both Orange/Mango and Raspberry/Blueberry; Indonesia sells Blueberry Ice Cream-flavoured Oreos; and Japan carries Oreos with a Green Tea Ice Cream flavour. Granted, that is a very small list of exclusive flavours for only a handful of countries that sell Oreos. But just glancing over the aforementioned list only goes to show that certain flavours are in demand in certain countries. Maybe one day, some of them will make their way over to North America.
7. There’s An Exact Ratio Of Cookies To Cream In Oreos
Considering the kind of cookie that Oreos are, there’s bound to be one question to be in minds of those who consume them- is there the right amount of cream between the wafers? After all, mistakes happen- or Oreos could just be lying right to our faces! While this is obviously a minor concern for most, others may look at it more seriously. It may make you want to know what exactly the truth is on the matter. Well, the truth is that, for the most part, Oreos are comprised of 71 percent cookie to 29 percent cream. The ratio is so specific that it will most likely put your mind at ease as to how Oreos are being manufactured. The only exceptions to this rule are Double Stuf Oreos, Mega Stuf Oreos, Mini Oreos, and Oreo Thins. Depending on which kind you’re looking at, the ratio will include either more cookie than cream, or more cream than cookie. The main point however is that the ratio of cookie to cream in regular Oreos is quite specific. There’s no doubt that that’s intentionally done to make sure that each cookie comes out looking just right. Good on Nambisco for having it down to a science!
6. A Song About Oreos Exists
Due to both their longevity and popularity, Oreos have managed to become something of a pop culture icon. They’re often referenced in many fictional worlds- from books, to movies, to TV shows- because they’re so easily recognizable. With this in mind, it should really come as no surprise to anyone that there’s a song out there that’s all about Oreos. The song in question came from the mind of comedic singer Weird Al Yankovic. Back in 1992, Yankovic released the album Off the Deep End to a fair amount of critical and commercial success. On this album was the song The White Stuff– a parody of the song The Right Stuff by 90’s pop boy band New Kids on the Block. The song is basically an excuse for Yankovic to rave all about Oreos, and how much he loves them. While it was never released as an official single for Off the Deep End, it surely found many admirers in its own right. A song professing your love for Oreos is definitely a strange song when you think about it. But the fact that it was a parody of a song from a boy band during the peak of their popularity means that it makes much more sense. Leave it to Weird Al to make such a concept work.
5. Oreos Are Technically Vegan
If you’re a vegan- or are someone who’s thinking about going vegan- you might believe that Oreos are or will become off-limits in your diet. But amazingly, that’s not true whatsoever. A Delish article from March 2018 explained that non-profit organization PETA tweeted out that month the fact that Oreos are indeed vegan. They also included a list of other vegan snacks, but the former fact was what stood out to people the most. The main thought was simple- how Oreos be vegan? The ingredient list is surprisingly vegan friendly, although the inclusion of palm oil may raise the ire of some. Many argue that palm plantations bring about harm to animals. However, it’s not something that’s outright banned when it comes to veganism. So technically, Oreos are a vegan food item. But if you were ask Nambsico, Oreos aren’t vegan after all. That’s due to the claim that milk can come in via cross contamination. Because of this, Oreos cannot be quality-controlled for traces of milk. For some, that makes Oreos a non-vegan snack. But if you’re not strictly vegan- or you just don’t care about cross contamination- then you’re more than welcome to think of Oreos as vegan after all.
4. How You Eat Oreos Says A Lot About Your Personality
According to one study from 2004, there are many different ways to eat Oreos. Some people dunk their Oreos in milk before eating them; others will lick the cream off before devouring the cookie; and there are also people who shove the entire cookie in their mouth, cream and all. Nambisco has never revealed how you’re exactly supposed to eat an Oreo cookie. That’s resulted in more than one way for people to eat them because there’s no right or wrong way to do so. But did you know that how you eat your Oreos says quite a bit about your personality? For example: if you’re something who dunks their Oreos in milk before eating them, you’re thought to be an adventurous, energetic, and social individual. If you prefer twisting the cookies apart to lick the cream off, you’re most likely artistic, emotional, sensitive, and trendy. If you just bite down on your Oreos, you’re believed to be easy-going, optimistic, and self-confident. It’s hard to believe that those facts can be discovered just from eating a snack. But it’s certainly interesting to dive into the specifics of such a study. Who knows- maybe how you eat Oreos is linked to your personality more than you may think!
3. The Double Stuf Oreos Are Not Actually “Double Stuffed”
When you think of Double Stuf Oreos in comparing them to regular Oreos, you’d believe that there’s exactly double the amount of cream in the former than the latter. That’s why they’re called Double Stuf Oreos- there’s double the stuffing in between the wafers. It only makes sense- and Nambisco swears that this is true. But in March of 2013, a high school math class decided to find out if they were actually telling the truth. They compared regular Oreos to Double Stuf Oreos in terms of the cookies to cream ratio. What they found was shocking, to say the least. As it turns out, Double Stuf Oreos only contain 1.86 times more cream than their regular counterparts. When Business Insider replicated the experiment later that August, they also found that Double Stuf Oreos don’t contain double the cream as promised. In response to the high school students’ experiment, Nambisco refused to believe their findings. They continued to insist both then and now that Oreo Double Stuf contains exactly double the filling. While it’s admittedly amusing to see a company insist such a thing in the face of evidence suggesting otherwise, to say that it’s uninteresting would be a complete lie. It’s more than a little fascinating, to say the least.
2. Oreo Wafers Can Be Either Dark Brown Or Black
If there’s one debate that’s as heated as the origins of Oreos’ name, it’s about the colour of the wafer cookies. Some people believe that they’re black; others are convinced that they’re dark brown. Like the previous question, this one isn’t necessarily important to answer in the grand scheme of things. Having said that, many people still want an answer to this burning question: What colour are the wafers? According to Oreos’ FAQ from Mondelez International, there is no colour assigned to the cookie portion of Oreos. They went on to explain, “Some people think the OREO is a shade of brown, while others view the colour closer to black.” This means that, as far as Nambisco is concerned, the wafers can be either colour. This answer may annoy some who feel strongly one way or another about the colour of Oreos’ wafers. But if you don’t have a strong opinion on the matter- or you simply just don’t care about this particular matter- then you can easily accept the company’s answer. Regardless of which side of the fence you land on here, this is one debate in particular that may continue to rage on despite the company’s official response.
1. Oreos Are Kosher
For years, one of the ingredients in Oreos was pig lard. This made them non-kosher, meaning that those who eat kosher foods could not eat Oreos whatsoever. It didn’t bother too many people, as it didn’t seem to cause much of a fuss with many. But it must’ve bother Nambisco at some point. Why is that so? Well, according to a Cornell University article from February of 2008, Oreos booted pig lard from their ingredient list back in 1997 in favour of vegetable oil. It took over three and a half years before Nambisco products were declared kosher, but they did it. That included Oreos, which allows the cream-filled cookies to be certified kosher, too. While some kosher food experts disagree, the majority of experts on the subject agree that Oreos and other products owned by Nambisco are kosher. So if you’re eating kosher- be it for religious reasons or something else- then you may be happy to hear that Oreos are a viable option for a sweet, tasty snack. Making Nambisco products kosher was an expensive, lengthy project that could’ve proven to be unnecessary to undertake. But it seems as though it was worth it, as Oreos continue to be going strong to this day.