Fluffernutter has been officially added to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, along with papa bod and deplatform

The influence of the New England sweet marshmallow concoction, also known as Fluff, has become more official.

Merriam-Webster announced on Wednesday that the word fluffernutter has been added to the dictionary, defined as “a peanut butter and marshmallow cream sandwich between two slices of white sandwich bread.”

The term was added with an onslaught of others, including papa bod, deplatform, and air fryer.

But unlike the other 454 additions, the origin of fluffernutter has roots here in Massachusetts.

In 1917, a Somerville man named Archibald Query made the marshmallow concoction in his kitchen and sold it door to door, according to the official Fluff website, marshmallowfluff.com. War shortages during World War I forced Query to close its doors and it quickly lost interest in the business.

After the war, Query sold his Fluff Formula to two Swampscott High School graduates, H. Allen Durkee and Fred L. Mower, for $ 500. From there, the sweet spread took off, gaining “a reputation among local housewives who ultimately put Fluff on the shelves of local grocery stores,” according to the website. In the 1950s, Durkee and Mower opened a warehouse in Lynn, the Durkee Mower Company factory, where Fluff is still produced today. Each year, Somerville hosts a What is the Fluff? Festival, honoring the city’s world-renowned clothing.

Today, in grocery stores around the world, Fluff appears to be nothing less than a household staple, with between 5 and 7 million pounds annually produced and sold globally, according to marshmallowfluff.com.

Merriam-Webster, headquartered in Springfield, has just further legitimized regionally-valued dissemination, securing its place in the national lexicon. And in the midst of an ongoing effort to make fluffernutter the state’s official sandwich, that endorsement certainly can’t hurt.


Brittany Bowker can be reached at [email protected] Follow her on twitter @brittbowker.



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