Gold Fish Crackers Stolen from Switzerland

1958 Can of Goldfischli
Every so often I hear complaints about people who copy things and improve them instead of “inventing” them. It just came up again in a discussion on Bruce Schneier’s blog.

Did you hear the one about the Gold Fish cracker invented in 1958 by Oscar Kambly at his family business?

America gets its first taste of Goldfish crackers in 1962. Margaret Rudkin discovers the snack cracker on a trip to Switzerland and returns with the recipe.

The Kambly site says the idea originally was a gift for Oscar’s wife.

Who would have thought that the Gold Fish cracker is actually a Swiss invention? And I wonder why Rudkin re-branded as OEM instead of being a distributor.

Maybe the Swiss stole the idea from the French, and maybe they stole it from… will the real inventor please swim forward?

One has to wonder what would happen if the town of Cheddar had a penny for every ounce of cheese sold in America under their stolen name…

One thought on “Gold Fish Crackers Stolen from Switzerland”

  1. Ironically, getting a penny for everything that uses your name is very similar to what is now happening with “Protected Designation of Origin” status.

    As a fellow cheese lover, Gorgonzola is a particularly amusing case. The irony is that Gorgonzola itself was swallowed up by Milan many years ago, and now houses commuters rather than dairy cattle. The protected status is instead conferred by law on other nearby towns!

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