Earlier today, a Facebook friend of mine, Craige, talked about how much better the ‘full fat’ Kraft Dinner is, compared to the 2% stuff. Coincidentally, Lori brought me a box of Kraft Dinner as part of the care-package of soft foods she thoughtfully gave me for my convalescence. This perfect storm made my dinner choice this evening quite clear. I haven’t had it for years, but I like it just fine. So of course I had to update my Facebook status to suit:
Rick is enjoying KD for dinner. He blames the ladies, two in particular. Especially Craige with her talk of delicious cheese!
Then, to my brief surprise, Craige asked what KD is. Guh. I knew, but temporarily forgot that what we call Kraft Dinner is called Kraft Macaroni & Cheese in the United States. But it was merely the abbreviation that was unfamiliar. She knew of Kraft Dinner, either because she’s widely travelled or because she was a fan of the Barenaked Ladies back in the day.
So I got to thinking. Why did they change one of the names? Or if they were always different, then why were they different? So off I went to the tubes!
According to the Kraft Dinner Wikipedia entry, they introduced the product to North America in 1937 and it was a big hit during the war when dairy products and meat were scarce. It further explains:
The product was originally marketed as Kraft Dinner, but is now known in the United States and other countries as Kraft Macaroni & Cheese (Dinner). In the United Kingdom, it is marketed as simply Macaroni and Cheese, while due to its popularity and nostalgic quality in Canada, it has retained its original name of Kraft Dinner (and the nickname KD).
So it was Kraft Dinner originally, but the entry gives no clue about why they changed the name for other countries. Curious, because It’s easy to drop the ‘Kraft’ from Macaroni & Cheese to name a knock-off product, but Kraft Dinner isn’t so easily made generic.
Perhaps it’s a testament to the product’s popularity in Canada is that a Canadian created the entry. How do I know? Elementary! Searching Wikipedia for “Kraft Macaroni & Cheese” will have you redirected to the “Kraft Dinner” entry, rather than the reverse.
I imagine the product artwork is copyright Kraft Canada, Inc. but it doesn’t say so. Let’s just go with that anyway, shall we? My scan, their product.