There is something about a printed survival guide you can eat that just screams Land Rover Defender. Unnecessarily capable, simply for the sake of it being physically possible to make it. That says Land Rover, right? Though, there must be a better way to say that. Laughably capable? Hilariously capable?
It makes perfect sense then that they would have made an edible survival guide to include with Defenders sold in 2012. Well, technically, an ad agency in United Arab Emirates made it, but you get the idea. 75,000 of these manuals are floating around out there somewhere, or were, apparently.
Who knows how many were eaten.
Each was printed on edible paper with edible ink and reportedly had approximately the nutritional value of a cheeseburger. Surely some owners ate them. Surely none of them actually needed to. But how many people really need a Land Rover Defender, anyway? It’s a perfect match.
It’s morbid but also a little wonderful to imagine that the sort of person who buys a Defender and then wrangles it into dicey off-road situations could burn through the rest of their survival gear and supplies before remembering the, *chuckles*, edible survival guide in the glove compartment.
Here is the description the ad agency provided for the survival guide:
While Land Rover vehicles can take on any obstacles in the desert, it cannot be said the same of their owners. Scorching temperatures, deadly animals and sinkholes are just a few things they might encounter. And when they venture deep into it, even the most experienced drivers can quickly succumb to the harshness of the desert.
We wanted to create something that would cut through the clutter and that these people would like to keep. So we created a survival guide, which explained the basics for staying alive in the Arabian Desert, and packaged it in a way that would spur the attention of our target audience. We researched every indigenous animal and plant, people could encounter in the Arabian Desert and how they could be used to survive. We studied the topography of the region to guide people to safety.
We used a reflective packaging similar to army rations, which could be used to signal for help, and bound the book with a metal spiral, which could be used for cooking. Finally, we even took an extra step so that in case of emergency, people could always EAT the book. It was made out of edible ink and paper, and it had a nutritional value close to that of a cheeseburger.
We sent the book to 5,000 existing customers, gave it away as a supplement to the cars’ manual and made it freely available in sports shops. The initial response was very positive. And the client was so happy with the concept that they asked us to include the book as an insert in the next edition of a car magazine, with a 70,000 circulation.
Dying to know if there are any of these still out there, and, really hoping someone has eaten one and can tell us about it.