What is National Pickle Day?
National Pickle Day is on November 14th and it was created to celebrate the pickle as one of the worlds favorite fermented foods. Pickles prove to be preposterously popular with people across the country; the number of pickle-eaters is projected to proliferate to more than 250 million by 2023. That gives plenty of pretext to position November 14th as prime pickle time!
History of National Pickle Day
The practice of pickling has existed for thousands of years. The process ensured a degree of preservation otherwise impossible in pre-modern conditions and was essential in providing a mobile supply of provisions for travelers as well as a dependable source of nutrition for those living through barren winters. While a diverse set of foods can be pickled, the cucumber emerges as the dominant food that most associate with the idea of both pickling and the word “pickle” itself. Archaeologists believe that the first evidence of pickled cucumbers originates from Tigris river valley civilizations, and the nutritional benefits of the food would go on to be lauded by such historical figures as Cleopatra and Julius Caesar.
With all their popularity in the Old World, pickles would not make their appearance in North America until 1492. As you may have guessed by the year, the one responsible for their introduction was none other than Christopher Columbus. Pickles were included in sailors’ rations on his expeditions as a means by which to prevent the onset of scurvy. By the mid-17th century, cucumbers bought from Dutch settlers farming in the New York area were pickled and distributed throughout the region. This would lay the foundations for the territory to be the perfect site for the introduction of the kosher dill pickle.
In the period of the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, a large number of Eastern European Jews immigrated to the United States and settled in the New York City area. They brought with them the unique methods that produce kosher dill pickles, and these early iterations of pickles would develop into the now-famous and ever-familiar food available in grocery stores throughout the United States.
National Pickle Day timeline
A Pickle Party
The first annual National Pickle Day celebrations take place in New York City.
A Pickle Portion
The United States government produces 40% of U.S. pickle output as they include pickles in rations for the armed forces.
- 10th Century
A Pickle Pairing
Dill, a central ingredient in many brine mixtures used to culture cucumbers, arrives in Western Europe from Sumatra.
- 2030 B.C.
A Pickle Provenance
Mesopotamians pickle cucumbers native to India and give birth to one of the great staples of food condiments.
Looking for a tangy twist to a creamy favorite? Why not add dill pickles to your deviled eggs? In fact, here’s a recipe to show you how!
Craving some slightly strange, but probably delicious, pickle themed snacks? Here’s the list you’ve been waiting for.
Fun Stats About Pickles
National Pickle Day FAQs
Is there a national pickle shortage?
Without raising too much alarm, there is a strain of mildew that has been particularly harmful to cucumber crops in the United States. However, researchers are working to develop a variety of mildew-resistant cucumbers, which would secure the future of the pre-pickle plant.
What is the pickle capital of the world?
It’s up for debate! St. Charles, Illinois, the original home of the pickle-centric marketing company Pickle Packers International, held the title for more than four decades. However, the organization has since relocated to Washington, D.C., leaving this particular question open.
What state makes the most pickles?
It’s currently unknown, but states such as California, Colorado, Florida, Texas, and Wisconsin are among the largest pickle producers in the United States.
National Pickle Day Activities
Break a Record
Got an appetite for pickles? Test your limits and see if you can break the world record for pickle consumption. The current holder of the throne gobbled up more than five-and-a-half pounds of pickles ... in six minutes. Good luck!
Envision Your Own Variety
Just because the technique has been around for thousands of years doesn’t mean that it’s been perfected… right? There are limitless possibilities as to how you can go about making pickles. Maybe it’s time for you to concoct your own formula and show the world what you (and your pickles) are made of!
Try 'Em All!
If you don’t want to stuff yourself silly with a peck of pickles, and you’re not inclined to brine your own cucumbers, consider sampling different kinds of pickles to discover which style is your favorite - from bread and butter, to sweet, to classic kosher dill, there are plenty of ways to enjoy this salty snack!
Why We Love National Pickle Day
Pickles Are Versatile
Although many choose to eat them on their own, pickles can be enjoyed fried, in a sandwich, in a dip, in a salad, among other ways.
Pickles Aid Athletes
Some may pucker at the idea of it, but drinking pickle juice can help athletes reduce the likelihood of experiencing cramps after intense exercise.
Pickles Have Probiotics
Pickles fermented in non-vinegar brine solutions carry with them probiotic microorganisms that provide a whole host of health benefits.