On our way back home from Mayo Clinic, Ann and I stopped in Austin, MN at the SPAM museum. There we learned that SPAM stands for “spiced ham” and there have been billions of cans sold.

Believe it or not, the SPAM museum is actually worth a stop. The museum is fun for kids, but also interesting for adults. And, it’s free!

At the SPAM museum, you’ll learn facts like:

  1. Six billion cans of SPAM would reach from Austin, MN to the moon and circle it more than 20 times.
  2. The top five SPAM purchasing US cities (per capita) are:  Honolulu, Hawaii; Little Rock, Arkansas; Memphis, Tennessee; Birmingham, Alabama; and Charlotte, North Carolina.
  3. It would take 2,051 SPAM cans to reach the top of the Washington Monument.
  4. In 1947 the Hormel Girls, a 60-member performing arts troupe, toured cities across America to generate awareness for SPAM.
  5. SPAM was introduced in 1937 by Hormel Foods.  Ken Daigneau, brother of a Hormel Foods Vice President, won a contest and $100 for naming SPAM.
  6. From 1941-1945, more than 1,000,000 pounds of SPAM was shipped abroad to feed allied troops during WWII.
  7. About 238,000 feet–that’s 45 MILES–of SPAM labels are applied every day.
  8. SPAM is produced in only two US cities:  Austin, Minnesota, and Fremont, Nebraska (where Ann went to kindergarten).
  9. Each day, 203,000 pounds of pork shoulder are used to produce SPAM
  10. SPAM flavors include Original, Bacon, Teriyaki, Chorizo, and many more.

The gift shop is, predictably, quite extensive and full of SPAM. There you can buy flavors of SPAM not available elsewhere. We, for instance, bought a case of SPAM–sadly, we have yet to try it.