Peperami is a pork salami sausage snack manufactured by Jack Link's in Germany and sold in the United Kingdom. According to Unilever, it was first shipped to the UK by accident in a container which was supposed to be carrying pâté. The company decided to attempt to sell the shipment to the UK market under the brand name 'Peperami'. Several new varieties have been introduced over the years with varying degrees of success. Peperami may be interpreted as a portmanteau of the words "pepperoni" and "salami", but the company does not want the product to be misunderstood as a combination of these different meats. In 1955, Peperami was one of the products from Nabisco. When the mistake was made, the company tried the meat snack and enjoyed it. This resulted in Unilever relaunching the snack.
In 2003, to try to retain appeal to an ever more health conscious market, the manufacturers of Peperami revised the formula to produce a product with a reduction in fat, saturated fat and salt content.
In Germany, the snack is alternatively sold as BiFi and instead made out of beef. Some discontinued Peperami products in Britain are still available under the BiFi brand in Germany. Another spin-off snack in Germany is the Ranger stick.
Unilever announced that, on February 21st, 2014, it had signed a definitive agreement for the sale of its meat snacks business to Jack Link’s, for an undisclosed amount.
The sale includes the brands BiFi, sold in Germany, the Benelux countries, Austria and Switzerland, and Peperami, which retails in the UK and Ireland.
The "Animal" is the mascot of the Peperami brand since around 1993. He is an anthropomorphized Peperami sausage stick who wears black boots. A "bit of an animal" (as the marketing slogan goes) and a "crazy wee fella", he has a bad attitude with an ill temper and a bold and sometimes-psychotic streak, that which has been toned down somewhat in recent years. He is also unafraid of injury or getting eaten, as seen in certain ads that he stars in.
He also has a self-destructive side to himself, as, in one ad, he ate off his own arms. Another example is when, in the advertisement for Peperami Noodles, he dives into a blender, laughing maniacally as he was chopped into pieces. In yet another instance, he moisturizes himself with applesauce before turning on a garbage disposal and jumping into it to "exfoliate".
The Animal also has a burning hatred towards vegetables and vegetarians.
From 1993 to 2010, he was voiced by Adrian Edmondson. From 2014 onwards, he is voiced by Enn Reitel.
With the introduction of Peperami Classic Beef, a beef-based, bull-horned counterpart to the Animal has also come onto the scene.
Peperami released a series of dog toys featuring the familiar Animal character. Toys include the "Salami saucer", "salami screamer", "the little nippler", "the big one", "meaty muncher", "the football fetch toy", "sausage stretch" and "flaming finger"
- Peperami (Original) - The original variation.
- Peperami Tex-Mex - Variation with a Tex-Mex flavour comprised of paprika, cayenne pepper, and "tangy tastiness".
- Peperami Hot - Spicy variation.
- Peperami Firestick - An even spicier variation.
- Peperami Wideboy - A thicker variation of the standard stick.
- Peperami Gobbler - Variation made with turkey meat. (discontinued)
- Peperami BBQ - Variation with a smoky BBQ flavor. (discontinued)
- Peperami Cheezie - The only variation that is not meat-based, but is instead a cheese stick. Introduced 1997. (discontinued)
- Peperami Roll - Essentially a Peperami sausage stick in a roll of bread. Comes in Original and Hot. (discontinued)
- Peperami Minis/Lunchbox Minis - Smaller, snack-sized variation.
- Peperami Nibblers - Bite-sized Peperami pieces. Comes in Original, Hot, and BBQ. (discontinued)
- Peperami Bunch of 5's - Packs containing five small Peperami sticks, first introduced 1995.
- Peperami Dunkers - A snack-size sausage with a dipping sauce. (discontinued)
- Peperami Sarni - A handheld snack with sausage, tomato sauce, and cheese, wrapped in soft bread, Introduced 2004. (discontinued)
- Peperami Canniballs - A sausage wrapped in crusty brown bread, Introduced 2004. (discontinued)
- Peperami Noodles - A snack similar to Super Noodles which comes with Peperami slices and powdered flavoring, Introduced 2005. Comes in Original, Fried Chicken, Hot and Spicy, and Barbecue. (discontinued)
- Peperami Pizza - A 7" thin crust cheese and tomato pizza with Peperami slices in lieu of pepperoni. Distributed by Bakkovar, who made its unique crisping dish. Introduced 2009. (discontinued)
- Pork Farms Peperami Spicy Hit - Six small snack sausage rolls - the sausage is Peperami. (discontinued)
- Peperami Pork Juice - The juice is a blended mix of alfalfa sprouts, acorns, truffles and beetroot, which are the nutritional ingredients usually found in pig feed. So this time, it's not a bit of an animal. Introduced 2015. (discontinued)
- Peperami Classic Beef - Variation made of smoked beef salami, rather than pork salami. Introduced 2017-2018.
- Peperami and Cheese Snack Box - A new snack box product with original flavour Peperami salami sticks and pieces of cheddar cheese. Introduced 2018.
- Get Your Teeth Into a Peperami (1988-1989)
- It's a Bit of an Animal (1993–present)
- Are You Barmy about Salami? (2007–present, used on packaging)
- Peperami, 100% Pork Salami (2007)
- The Spicy Meat Snack (1988-2007, used on packaging)
- A Bit of Fun for Your Animal (2011–present, used on the dog toys)
- It's a Little Bit of an Animal (for Peperami Minis, later Peperami Lunchbox Minis)/They're Little Bits of an Animal (for Peperami Nibblers)
- Share, Snack & Scoff (for Peperami Nibblers, used on packaging)
- It's a Fiery Peperami (for Peperami Hot)
- It's a Red Hot Peperami (2004, for Peperami Firestick)
- It's Peperami, Gone a Bit Noodles (for Peperami Noodles)
- It's a Bit More of an Animal (for Peperami Wideboy)
- New BBQ Flavour Peperami (for BBQ Peperami)
- It's a Bit of an Animal Inside (2015, for reintroduced Peperami Roll)
- It's a Bit of Alright (1996, for Peperami Gobbler)
- Any Hotter, I'd be Fondue (1997, for Peperami Cheezie)
- In 1987, before "the Animal" was featured in the advertisements, a series of advertisements with the slogan "Get Your Teeth Into A Peperami" were aired. One such advertisement from 1989 titled Venus Fly Trap saw a man feed a Venus flytrap a Peperami. Often, these ads favorably compared Peperami towards meat-flavored potato chips and corn snacks.
- The Cheezie variant never had a slogan, instead the Cheezie character DJ Cheezie (voiced by Lenny Henry) would normally say something (Usually "Any Hotter, I'd be Fondue") next to an image of the snack and 'New!' banner. DJ Cheezie appeared in the first four advertisements for the snack. He resembled a yellow version of "the Animal" with slicked hair, and ran a fictional radio station.
- Other advertisements, in other media aside from television, include Animal, released in 1996 as an advergame, and a notable ad, printed in magazines and on billboards, featured the "Animal" burning on a heater, as a launch for their new Firestick flavour. This ad was accompanied by a television advert titled Arson Fire (which was a remake of the ad for the Hot flavour).
- Some of the television adverts appear on the Peperami website. These are Horror Movie (July 1993), Wimp (March 1994), Kebab (May 1994), Arson Fire (March 2004), Tender (September 2008) and Exfoliate (September 2008)
- In May 2014, after a four-year break, a new advert was launched featuring the Animal eating one of his hands as part of his "five a day" to promote the Bunch of 5's.
- In April 2015, Jack Link's launched a new series of adverts for Peperami and BIFI, starring the original animal after a new and tasty CGI make-over. The ads were directed by Pierre Bertrand and produced by creative agency BSUR and production company Not To Scale Amsterdam.