Friday, January 13, 2012


Marion Pellicano Ambrose

They’re outside the supermarket, church and Walmart! They might even come right up to your door! Yes, they're everywhere!Who? Girl Scouts, of course. It’s cookie selling time! Girls Scout Troops have been selling cookies as their major fund raiser for many years.

 The first cookie sales by an individual Scout unit was by the Mistletoe Troop in Muskogee, Oklahoma in December 1917. In 1922, the Girl Scout magazine The American Girl suggested cookie sales as a fund-raiser and provided recipes. In 1933, Girl Scouts in Philadelphia organized the first official sale, selling homemade cookies at the windows of local utility companies. The first Girl Scout cookie recipe was a sugar cookie. In 1936 the national organization began licensing commercial bakers to produce cookies.

During World War II the Girl Scouts sold calendars in addition to cookies, because of shortages of flour, sugar, and butter. In 1942 there were 48 cookies per box, available in either vanilla or chocolate. Customers were limited to two boxes during some war years. By 1943 Girl Scouts also collected fat in cans with Girl Scout labels to aid the war effort and sold War Bonds at no profit.

Girls who participate in cookie sales can earn prizes for their efforts. There are also unit incentives if the unit as a whole does well. As of 2007, sales were estimated at about 200 million boxes per year. Girl Scouts sell cookies to relatives, friends, neighbors, and others in their town or city. In recent years, because of safety concerns, an increased emphasis has been placed on cookie booths, where girls sell from tables in public areas under the supervision of adult troop leaders, rather than door-to-door. Many councils offer the option for customers to sponsor boxes of cookies to be sent to U.S. servicemen and women. In 2007, an official website was launched, with information on purchasing Girl Scout cookies.                                                                                                                    

 As an incentive to sell, Girl Scouts are sometimes offered prizes, such as stuffed animals, trinkets, coupons, credits toward Girl Scout camp, activities, or uniforms. These incentives vary from Girl Scout council to council. The accumulation of prizes is usually cumulative, so that a girl who has won the prize for selling 100 boxes of cookies will also get the 75-box prize, the 50-box prize, the 25-box prize and the 20-box prize. In some councils, girls may choose to earn more money for their troop instead of prizes, if they are working toward a troop goal such as a trip or other expensive activity. This type of fund raising is intended to teach Girl Scouts valuable skills in planning, teamwork, finance, organization, communication, and goal setting.

 Girl Scout cookie varieties include:

·                    Thin Mints (green box): Thin, mint-flavored chocolate wafers dipped in a chocolate coating.

·                    Peanut Butter Sandwiches/Do-si-dos/Savannahs (orange box): Peanut butter filling sandwiched between crunchy oatmeal cookies.

·                    Peanut Butter Patties/Tagalongs (red box): Crispy vanilla cookies layered with peanut butter and covered with a chocolate coating.

·                    Shortbreads/Trefoils (blue box, previously yellow): A traditional shortbread cookie made in the shape of the Girl Scout trefoil insignia.

·                    Caramel deLites/Samoas (purple box): Vanilla cookies coated in caramel, sprinkled with toasted coconut and laced with chocolate stripes. The name "Samoas" is presumably an allusion to the tropical island of Samoa, derived from the tropical ingredients of coconut and cocoa.

·                    Lemonades (yellow box): Round shortbread cookie with lemon icing.

·                    Lemon Chalet Cremes (yellow box): Cinnamon sandwich cookies with lemon creme filling. Previously rectangular, they were changed to round cookies in 2010.]

·                    Shout Outs! (pink box): Belgian-style caramelized cookies.

·                    Dulce De Leche (turquoise box): Latin caramel cookies with caramel chips. The earlier versions had a caramel topping, which was later removed because of the high amount of trans fat.

·                    Thank U Berry Munch (cranberry-colored box): Cranberries and white fudge chunks. Discontinued in most markets for 2011, but still available in NYC suburbs.

·                    Savannah Smiles: Crescent shaped, lemon-wedge cookie with lemon chips and dusted in powdered sugar


·                    Sugar-Free Chocolate Chips (brown box); Small sugar- free cookies. Discontinued in 2011.

·                    Cinna-spins: Cinnamon-flavored cookies shaped like miniature cinnamon rolls that come in 100-calorie packs. Retired and replaced by Daisy Go Rounds.

·                    Daisy Go Rounds (light green box): Cinnamon-flavored cookies shaped like daisies. Replaced Cinna-spins for the 2009 sale. Advertised as low fat, they also come in 100 calorie packs. Retired and replaced with Shout Outs! in 2011.

·                    All Abouts/Animal Treasures/Thanks-A-Lot (pink box): Shortbread cookies dipped in fudge and topped with an embossed thank-you message in one of five languages: English, Spanish, French, Chinese, and Swahili. ABC Bakers still makes the Thanks-A-Lots (turquoise box). The retired All About cookies were shortbread topped with chocolate fudge embossed with a phrase such as "Girl Scouts is all about friendship" or "Girl Scouts is all about honesty".

Best-selling Girl Scout cookies

·                    Thin Mints (25% of total sales)

·                    Samoas (Caramel deLites) (19% of total sales)

·                    Tagalongs (Peanut Butter Patties) (13%)

·                    Do-si-dos/Savannahs (Peanut Butter Sandwiches) (11%)

·                    Trefoils (Shortbread) (9%)

So what is your favorite? How many boxes do you buy each year? My vote goes to Samoas but I think when I try the new Savannah Smiles, I might just have to change my mind! I’ll buy my usual 6 boxes from the different scouts I know and pack them in my freezer to last until next cookie selling season! So remember, buy those cookies and support the Girl Scouts of America!

info taken from:

1 comment:

  1. Just send me a truckload of thin mints and I'll be happy!