The Real Difference Between Oreos In China And The US

Describing Oreo as famous probably doesn't quite do it justice. Famous would be suitable to describe a footballer or an actor, someone who is highly respected by the people who actually know who they are. Given that YouGovAmerica has found that the Oreo brand is recognised by 98% of people, iconic would definitely be a more appropriate word.

It could well be the quantity and, in some cases, bizarreness of flavors that make Oreos so irresistible to hungry customers. Research revealed by Pattern shows that of the recorded 85 Oreo varieties released through the years (including such wonders as the taste of Hot Chicken Wing), Classic Oreo is considered the queen of them all, closely followed by Chocolate Creme and Most Stuf.

However, even in times of uncontrollable global commercialism, it turns out that Oreo may not be quite so popular outside the U.S. According to NPR, Oreo was a massive flop when it was first released in China, leading to an incredible makeover that left the cookies looking almost unrecognizable.

Chinese people were unimpressed with the look and taste of Oreos

Although everyone across America may recognize Oreos as crunchy circles of chocolate perfection, the cookies were initially less appealing in China. Chinese consumers found Oreos to be far too sweet for their liking, leading Oreo bosses to revamp the cookie's signature flavor for the first time in its history (via Financial Times).

As the Financial Times explains, this triggered the invention of an Oreo flavor that was less sweet, called LightSweet Oreo, as well as allowing local tastes to influence different Oreo creations. Canadian Business reports that even the legendary Oreo shape was axed in favor of a long wafer chocolate stick filled with crème.

Ultimately, Oreo's unrelenting efforts to succeed in China paid off, leading to the country becoming the company's second-largest market after the U.S. (via Baking Business). Fascinating Oreo flavors have spread across China, including creations filled with the tastes of green tea, peach and grape, and tiramisu (via Mondelez).