I am not alone. Sweet!

I can’t remember when I started collecting sugar packages. I was young, probably around the age when kids think everything is collectable and come home with rocks in their pockets. But I kept collecting sugar packets and pretty soon I had what I thought was a substantial collection. I’ve always been a bit embarrassed of my weird hobby, I have never met anyone who collects sugar packages, and sometimes I get pretty concerned looks when I tell people. So far I have only ever been open about my hobby to people who I am close to, at which point I put them to work collecting for me … especially before they go on vacation.

As far back as I can remember my motivation for collecting sugar packets is that someone somewhere put a lot of time and effort into designing them, and I feel they deserve to be admired as sweet little pieces of art. Its been at least 15 years since I started and sugar package collecting has remained a fun and inexpensive hobby. A day that I find or receive a new packet is always a good day. I get very excited when I compare an older and a newer package from the same restaurant and note how style has changed. And the only money I have ever spent on my collection is on buying those plastic pocket pages people who collect sports or playing cards use -for about 30 cents a piece.

Sugar sugar...
23hours via Flickr

As you can probably infer from the existence of my blog, I spend a lot of time on-line. So as to why I took me to this very day to type “sugar packet collecting” into Google, I have no idea. But I did, and I have never been so pleased by a set of search results. Today I discovered that I am not alone. There are people all over the world who collect sugar packages. WAY more packages than I have, some collectors have tens of thousands of packets. And they post pictures of them, they trade them, talk about them, catalogue them, they have conventions! There is even a name for it; sucrology. I am a sucrologist.

I have always accepted that not everyone can appreciate a sugar collection, and figured if there were others like me, they probably wanted to be as quiet about it as I did. -I underestimated people AND the internet.- There is the UK Sucrologist Club, Germany’s Zuckersammler-Klub, the french Les collection de sucre, Club van Suikerzakjesverzamelaars in Holland,  interestingly (to me) there is a very large Portuguese website dedicated to sucrology, the Miller family has been collecting since 1978, there is Sugar World, a Flicker pool, and even a small but active Facebook group.

Every sucrologist has their own style of sugar collection. Some collect different types of sugar, some collect specific themes or shapes, some empty the packets, some store them in boxes or photo albums.  I never knew any of this before today but have always been somewhat particular about my collection. I only collect white sugar, not brown or cane or sweetener. I don’t have specific themes but I do group my collection together into categories.  I love finding different shapes and types of packaging. And I keep the packages full, as they were intended to be seen.

Now I’m not quite ready to dive into the world of devoted sugar trading; my collecting is too personal for that. I’ll just keep getting excited about finding a new sachet, and accept help from my less critical traveling friends. What I will do is take my sucrology out of the closet -so to speak. I will not be self-conscious about a hobby that makes me unique. I will share my collection with others.

Are there any other closet sucrologist out there? Is there anyone in Canada who collects sugar?  Come out and comment!