“They’re tragically delicious!” experts say
Dublin – University College Dublin issued a stark warning about the decline in Leprechaun populations. The source of the decline is the poaching of the Irish little people’s beloved lucky charms.
“This is the worst demographic blow to Ireland since the potato famine!” declared Jason O’Flannery, chair of the Leprechaun Studies.
The population once numbered in the hundreds of thousands. But now it has been decimated. The global demand for the iconic lucky charms has caused turmoil in the Leprechaun society.. Historian Mary Walsh says the current crisis traces back to the English and industrialization.
“In Victorian England, lucky charms had a reputation of being an aphrodisiac. Due to conservative social mores and bland food, even a slightly sweet morsel could arouse them,” Walsh said.
The one-time delicacy became an Irish treat following independence from Great Britain, and consumption only grew after World War II. General Mills launched the cereal, Lucky Charms in 1964.
“While originally traded on fair terms, the demand from America began to outstrip the supply of magic that went into the charms, said O’Flannery, “This is not unlike European demand for beaver damaging the North American continent.”
Walsh concurred on the comparison to North America.
“Lucky charms are essential to Leprechaun society,” Walsh said. “Much like Native Americans used buffalo, lucky charms are used for a variety of purposes. Leprechauns use them as foodstuffs, in courting rituals, family bonding, and sacred ceremonies. It’s much more than a Saturday morning breakfast cereal to them.”
WORLD DEMAND CONTINUES TO ESCALATE
General Mills defended its continued sale of Lucky Charms, declaring that it had been in the process for decades to reduce the strain on the Indigenous Irish people’s food. Food critics, like Irish-American Gregory Kelly, noted the change.
“General Mills talks a big game, but the truth is they are not concerned about the plight of the Leprechauns. The cereal giant priced out the Leprechauns. “The company needs to stop giving our little ones the idea that real Irish lucky charms taste like high fructose cereal!”
Walsh said that while Western nations have cut back on their demands, poaching of lucky charms in order to serve the developing world’s tastes has caused the most damage.
“Countries around the world have protected animal-based aphrodisiacs, like horns from endangered rhinos. But affluent (and impotent) men from China, India, and Singapore have revived the original British tradition,” Walsh said, “They are willing to pay top dollar for the real charms. Smugglers kill or maim almost 4,000 Leprechauns a year!”
Walsh showed WWN several of the lucky charms in her collection. These included hard-to-find and discontinued yellow moons, blue diamonds, and hourglasses. As we talked, she caught herself absentmindedly grabbing charms and snacking on them. She looked down, ashamed, at the charm dust on her fingers.
“Ironically lucky charms bring bad luck. This is a surprising fact, given how desired these are,” Walsh said. “I guess you could say that they’re tragically delicious.”