Food and drink collectibles



2015-06-26 10:58:05

Food and drink collectibles are items connected to various types and brands of food and drink. They can range from packaging and labels to advertising signs, promotional items and free gifts given away with products. The area can include memorabilia and merchandise relating to famous brands, ephemera relating to the history of product packaging and advertising such as changing logos and design.


Many collectors choose to focus their collection on a specific area, such as a particular brand, type of food or item; examples could include -

  • breakfast cereal packets from the 1960s
  • Campbell’s soup tins
  • vintage Coca Cola vending machines

Some collections focus on the changing designs of packaging and advertising through the decades, or the varying styles from different countries for products that are sold around the world.

Many products have recognisable characters and mascots such as the Pillsbury Doughboy or the Keebler Elf, which have appeared on various forms of merchandise over the years. This includes such items as toys, dolls, t-shirts, lunch-boxes and other collectibles. Collections of such products can sometimes offer an insight into the history of branding and the advertising industry as a whole.

Often these mascots become recognisable pop culture icons in their own right, and generations who grew up with them as part of the public consciousness can seek out their memorabilia as a form of nostalgia.

Other collectors focus on collecting items connected to their favourite childhood food or drink, or those with packaging featuring a similar theme (ie sports related packets, tins and bottles).

Where to find collectibles

There are a large number of sources for food and drink collectibles such as online auctions, second-hand/charity shops, car boot sales and trades with other collectors.

Many of the items collected are specific niches, with little or no secondary markets, and trading items with other collectors is common. Many people have internet pages dedicated to their collections, making it easier for likeminded collectors to swap items and information.

Many items of memorabilia are sold on internet auction sites such as eBay, and some auction houses hold dedicated memorabilia auctions. There are also some dedicated dealers, but for the majority of items the demand is fairly limited to specialist collectors; most food and drink collectibles have little or no resale value other than to similar collectors, and so often larger items are sold through private sales.

For anyone collecting food and drinks collectibles, the best advice is to look for other collectors online and research your chosen area through the manufacturers themselves.

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