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When I woke up today the last thing I thought Id be doing is spending the entire morning looking at remains of masticated food in peoples mouths. But some would say this is the unexpectedly funny side of my job as Director of Records Management at Guinness World Records!
Although I travel around the world to ensure that the rules are being strictly followed and announce world records, today only a short cab ride here in London was required, to Kensington, where I was asked to adjudicate a record at the Metro newspaper HQ. The record was the legendary most Jaffa Cakes eaten in one minute. Metro challenged its readers to send in videos of their own attempts in a bid to qualify to try and beat the record, and were inundated with emails from wannabe record-breakers from throughout the entire UK all wanting to have a crack at attempting the difficult challenge.
The record to beat was four Jaffa cakes in one minute, and I was a little sceptical, as usual. This was because Id seen several attempts at this record recently – we even set one test attempt in our own Guinness World Records offices (although we are not allowed to hold a record for conflict of interest, we like to try them out from time to time). But of all these attempts, no-one ever beat four Jaffa Cakes in one minute and I had started to believe we had reached what is humanely possible.
I know what you are thinking: this is ridiculous, I can do more than that!.
Some people claim to have eaten up to 12! However, the rules for this record are very stringent: no drinking, you can only eat one cake at the time, and must show an empty mouth before starting to eat the next one.
The empty mouth is the tricky bit. This record is about chewing and swallowing each cake completely. Some people forget to show their mouth, or it just isnt empty. So I was prepared to see more remnants of food plastered around teeth and tongue, but I was in for treat instead!
The selected readers who decided to gamble their reputation in front of a camera had done their homework and all had their very own technique. Drink lots before the record attempt starts to induce salivation, insert the Jaffa Cake from the chocolate side to facilitate sliding, biting off the rim of the cake to use the orange filling to keep the mouth moistI am not kidding! I am not kidding! Fact is and training paid off for Andy Robinson who elevated this record to 5 without too much effort and for Paul Wilson who took this record to what I consider an unbeatable level managing to eat 6 Jaffa Cakes in one minute. Anybody cares to prove me wrong, again?