Who Makes Money on Girl Scout Cookies?

A peak behind the curtain of the $1.2 billion Girl Scout Cookie business.
February 25, 2024
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Girl Scouts selling Girl Scout Cookies

Girl Scout Cookie season has commenced. Every year, from January to April, 1.7 million Girl Scouts head door-to-door and set up tables at their nearest grocery stores to sell those colorful boxes of cookies Americans love. A Girl Scout can sell upwards of 200 irresistibly delicious cookie boxes in one day.

Girl Scout Cookies are a revenue-generating machine:

  • Girl Scouts sell more than 200 million boxes of cookies annually
  • Girl Scout Cookies are projected to generate $1.2 billion in revenue in 2024

Girl Scouts of the USA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, so who makes money on Girl Scout Cookies?

The corporations that own the two bakeries – ABC Bakers and Little Brownie Bakers – with the Girl Scout Cookie contracts. ABC Bakers is owned by Interbake Foods, and Little Brownie Bakers is owned by Italian confection maker, Ferrero.

Girl Scouts pay the bakeries $1.30 for each box of cookies, which comes out to a whopping $260 million in revenue annually for these bakeries. These bakeries generate a ton of revenue for their parent companies from the production of Girl Scout Cookies, and don't expect this to change anytime soon.

ABC Bakers and Little Brown Bakers have unprecedented staying power since the Girl Scouts have little incentive to change bakeries due to quality control. ABC Bakers has held the Girl Scout Cookie contract since 1937 and Little Brownie Bakers since the late 1980s.

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