Both Hannah and I found a topical article that could give our project a good context to work from. It states that traditional British biscuits are losing popularity in favour of American cookies. Oh no! We have to do something about this.
Mail Online article:
'Crumbs! The Bourbon may be 100 years old - but traditional biscuits sales are crumbling in favour of American-style cookies
By CHRIS BEANLAND and TAMARA ABRAHAM
UPDATED: 11:20, 13 August 2010
Crumbling sales: Demand for American-style cookies has caused sales of traditional British biscuits to fall by 4.5 per cent over the past 12 months
Industry experts have blamed the recession for the downturn, but over the same period, sales of 'gourmet' biscuits, such as Italian biscotti, Viennese Whirls and cookies had increased by 20 per cent.
M&S biscuit buyer, Jenny Rea, told The Telegraph: 'During these tougher times people are working harder than ever before so it seems they feel they deserve a better biscuit and only the best will do.'
Waitrose sales seem to echo this, naming Italian biscotti as its most popular biscuit. The word 'biscuit' is derived from the Latin for twice-cooked in reference to the original baking technique. The British have a proud history of the snack, which was originally invented as a food for soldiers on campaign thanks to the fact that they keep for a long time. Custard Creams, Jaffa Cakes, Garibaldis and Digestives are deeply ingrained in the British consciousness, and many people are even judged by their choice of biscuit. Who could forget the furore when Gordon Brown declined to name his favourite biscuit in a webchat with Mumsnet.com. He later tweeted that he liked 'anything with a bit of chocolate.'
More decisive in his tea-dunking tastes is Terry Wogan, who called the Rich Tea 'lord of all biscuits'.
And Garibaldis are the favorite tea biscuit of DCI Gene Hunt in the BBC show Life on Mars.
Stuart Payne, founder of biscuit review website nicecupofteaandasitdown.com calls McVitie's milk chocolate digestives as 'a figurehead for the entire chocolate biscuit world'. He has less praise for Tunnock’s marshmallow teacakes, which he describes as having a consistency of 'somewhere between shaving foam and bath sealant'. Sarah Heynen, from McVitie's says: 'It is clear that everyone has their own quirky habits when it comes to biscuits. 'Biscuits fill many roles from giving you a mid-afternoon boost to sharing with a friend over a nice cuppa. 'How we choose to enjoy our favourite varies vastly from area to area and between the different ages and sexes, but one thing is sure, people are not about to get tired of biscuits anytime soon.' The Bourbon was first baked in Bermondsey, South London, by the confectionery company Peek Frean in 1910 and was initially called the Creola, until it was decided it would be more appealing if the name was changed to that of France's royal family. And that's not the Bourbon's only regal connection - Peek Frean baked the Queen and Prince Philip's wedding cake in 1947, a 6ft, six-tier affair, with a metal knight riding a horse on top. The firm, which also gave the world the Garibaldi in 1861, is now owned by U.S. food giant Kraft. But we still enjoy Bourbons with a good old British cuppa.
TAKING THE BISCUIT: BRITISH FAVOURITES
Made from shortbread and plum jam. In the recent Doctor Who episode Victory of the Daleks, the Doctor tricks the Daleks into believing a Jammie Dodger is a Tardis self-destruct button.
First created in Yorkshire in 1627, the Rich Tea was designed as a light snack for the upper-classes. Comedian Peter Kay called them 'one-dips' because the thin biscuit crumbles easily when dunked in tea.
A biscuit sandwich with a vanilla-flavoured fondant filling. In a poll of 7,000 people, nine out of ten voted the Custard Cream their favourite biscuit.
Introduced to the UK in 1927, manufacturer McVities ended up in court in 1991 as VAT is usually charged on chocolate-covered biscuits, but not plain biscuits or cakes. The company successfully defended its classification of Jaffa Cakes as cakes by producing a 12-inch version of the product to demonstrate that they were miniature cakes.
The Digestive is so-called due to the belief that they had antacid properties because they contain sodium bicarbonate. The packets now bear a disclaimer to the contrary. 71m packets were sold in the UK last year and every second, 52 digestive biscuits are consumed.
Better known as 'squashed fly' biscuits thanks to the currants within, it was introduced to the UK 150 years ago and was named after Italian general Giuseppe Garibaldi. First manufactured by Peek Freans, who also invented the Bourbon.
First manufactured by Huntley & Palmers in 1904, there is some confusion over how the coconut-flavoured Nice biscuit should be pronounced. Australian biscuit maker Arnott's claims the biscuit is named after the French city.'