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Aug 14 19, 12:11 pm

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Where did the Hawaiian Pizza come from?

by | Food, Lifestyle

Aug. 14, 19 | 12:11 pm

One of the increasingly controversial and funnily debatable topics when it comes to pizza is the choice of including a pineapple in its toppings. Most, if not, all pizza places refer to such a pizza as the “Hawaiian Pizza” but how did it originate?

Fifty-five years ago, Sam Panopoulos made a decision that would change pizza forever: he took a can of pineapple and threw it on a pizza.

The path that led Panopoulos to Hawaiian pizza began long before 1962, Atlas Obscura reported.

Panopoulos immigrated from Greece to Canada in 1954. It was on this trip that he had his first bite of pizza, in the birthplace of the food — Naples, Italy.

In a report from Business Insider, when Panopoulos arrived in Canada, he opened a restaurant in Chatham, a Canadian town located near Detroit, Michigan. At first the restaurant, called the Satellite, didn’t sell pizza, as the exotic treat was nearly impossible to find in Canada, though it was already a hit in Detroit.

The Satellite served mostly classic diner fare, such as pancakes and burgers. Soon, however, Panopoulos decided to start getting creative with menu items, adding options like American Chinese food and pizza to the menu.

According to Atlas Obscura, the rise of tiki culture, as troops returning from the South Pacific after serving in World War II, and the influence of American Chinese food were crucial to inspiring Panopoulos. Panopoulos sought to unite the sweet and the savory — a mission that ended in him dumping a can of pineapple on a pizza pie.

“Nobody liked it at first,” Panopoulos told CBC Radio’s “As It Happens” in February. “But after that, they went crazy about it. Because those days nobody was mixing sweets and sours and all that. It was plain, plain food.”

Soon, Panapoulos found the winning combination when he added ham to the mix.

From the start Panapoulos called his creation “Hawaiian pizza,” though he didn’t patent the name.

The pizza caught on, traveling across Canada, throughout the US, and internationally (though there are also rumors that other pizzerias independently began serving pizza topped with pineapple). Today, it’s served at most major pizza chains and has become the most popular type of pizza in Australia, according to The West Australian.

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With more than 2,500 strategic distribution spots, TFT is available where the Filipinos are - at Smart Bus Shelters, Metro Stations, restaurants, supermarkets, schools, airport lounges, Emirates and Etihad Philippine-bound flights, churches, Filipino community events and many more.

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