As a joke in the early 80’s, Phillip Lewis, the landlord of the Vaults Pub in Welshpool, Wales started offering his customers “hedgehog flavoured” crisps (the American potato chip).
Realising that he might be on to something, Mr Lewis set up a company called Hedgehog Foods Ltd and started selling his crisps worldwide reaching reported sales of $3.6 m one year.
Unfortunately Mr Lewis soon ran foul of Britain’s Office of Fair Trading who charged him with false advertising as his crisps were actually flavoured with pork fat and not hedgehogs. As you may imagine there were also many complaints from hedgehog lovers all over the country who were appalled by the idea that Mr Lewis might be using hedgehogs in his manufacturing process. The issue was resolved when Mr Lewis went out and interviewed some gypsies, who do actually eat hedgehogs, to find out what they really tasted like. He then got a flavouring company to duplicate the flavour and changed the label on his packaging from “hedgehog flavoured” to “hedgehog flavour”.
During the time hedgehog crisps were marketed, they were a major source of funding for St. Tiggywinkles a wildlife hospital in Britain.