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2020 Cookie Program

The Girl Scout Cookie Program isn't actually about cookies. Would you believe it if we told you that? Yes, girls selling cookies is a great way for them to fund troop activities.

The Cookie Program is also a fantastic way for your Girl Scout to learn five skills that will transfer over into other areas of her life. Sure, learning money management will likely help her when she's in high school, college or beginning her professional life. But you might also notice she is more responsible with her allowance now.

Plus, every girl who participates in the Cookie Program is helping make her Girl Scout experience possible. Does she love camp? Proceeds from the case of Shortbread cookies she sells the next door neighbor may help feed her favorite horse at Camp Misty Meadows! Participation in the Cookie Program also helps keep activity costs low for everyone.

The Cookie Program isn’t just about cookies – it’s about giving girls a valuable life experience that will help shape them into the type of young woman who grows up to be a smart, responsible citizen of the world. And we can all agree that we want to raise those types of girls.

This page will provide you a quick overview of everything you need to know about the 2020 Cookie Program.

What's New in 2020?

Here is a quick overview of changes being made to the 2020 Cookie Program:

Direct Sale – GSSJC is moving to a model called a direct sale. This means rather than having an extended order-taking period where girls circle back to customers with deliveries 2-3 weeks later, they will start the Cookie Program with cookies in hand. Councils who use this model consistently see their sales increase significantly, meaning girls are earning more proceeds for troop activities.

New Packaging – Cookie packaging has been updated for 2020! We’re excited to share this refresh with you and cookie customers. The new images feature girls who were named winners in the 2018 Cookie Pro contest hosted by Girl Scouts of the USA.

Order Placing – GSSJC has made changes to placing orders and we’re excited to roll them out! This season, troop cookie managers will be placing all orders for your troop upfront. With these changes, GSSJC is looking to streamline the experience for both girls and customers. No more constant orders or waiting for cookies.

Optional Order Card – Girls will have the option of using an order card between January 23 and February 1 to take orders and plan their deliveries.

Shorter Cookie Season – We’ve heard you! We know that cookie season can feel overwhelming for many troops and girls. For 2020, we’ve shortened the cookie season. Girls will start selling cookies on Feb. 1 and the program will end on March 22 – that’s about a month shorter than the 2019 Cookie Program.

Gluten-Free Cookies – This season, gluten-free cookies will increase to $6 per package. This is to keep in line with the cost of production. All other cookies will remain at $5 per package. Troop cookie managers had the opportunity to preorder gluten-free cookies for their troops in late September and early October. Any additional gluten-free cookies will ONLY be available at the Girl Scout Center cupboard and will be extremely limited.

Cookie Family Guide – Be on the lookout for our first-ever Cookie Program Family Guide coming to your mailbox in December. This guide will have everything your family needs to know for 2020 Cookie Program!

How a Direct Sale Works

We heard you: the Cookie Program needs to be shorter and easier to participate in. After the 2019 cookie season, GSSJC reviewed your feedback and took a look at the Cookie Program. We’ve made several changes this year to make it easier than ever.

To accomplish this, GSSJC is moving to a direct sale model for the 2020 Cookie Program. What does this mean? In short, that means girls start the Cookie Program with cookies in-hand rather than taking orders and waiting 3-4 week to receive those orders and deliver them to customers.

How a direct sale works
In a direct sale, troops review their previous year’s orders during the initial order, determine how many cookies they want to order and place the order with the council. This will now be called the starting inventory We recommend troops order at least 75% of what their initial order was in the 2019 Cookie Program. This will help avoid repeated runs to cookie cupboards that may need to be restocked more frequently. The logistic of the order process are being finalized and will be communicated to troop cookie managers via emails, text messages and the Online Community (community.gssjc.org).

Once the order is placed, troops will pick up their orders beginning January 23 in the same way they always have. The council will schedule a series of cookie drops where troops pick up their cookies, then distribute them to girls.

Starting January 23, girls will also gain access to Smart Cookies, a digital order-taking tool, as well as begin using an optional paper order card to help pre-plan their deliveries.

Then on February 1 – the official start of the 2020 Cookie Program – girls can begin knocking on doors to sell cookies in their neighborhood. The good news about moving to a direct sale model? Councils who use this model consistently see their sales increase significantly, meaning girls are earning more proceeds for troop activities!

Cookie booths will begin on February 14, and the sign-up for these will function the same way. The 2020 Cookie Program will end on March 22.

Why we’re moving to a direct sale
The easiest answer? We heard you and knew we needed to make the Cookie Program easier for you, your troop and your family. Starting the program with cookies already in hand means instant gratification for cookie customers. It also means less tracking, less paperwork and less stress for girls and troops. Simplifying this process will make the program run more smoothly for everyone.

By moving to a direct sale, we’ve also been able to shorten the Cookie Program by nearly a month. This means less of a gap between TCM training and the start of the program, that girls will receive their recognitions in a more timely manner at the end of the Cookie Program and that girls and their families are only spending seven weeks selling cookies rather than 12.

Important Dates

December: Troop cookie managers can begin taking online or in-person training. Visit gssjc.org/activities for registration links.

January 13: Deadline for troop cookie managers to submit their starting inventory order. (They will receive an email prior to this date notifying them orders are now being accepted.)

January 23: Troops may begin picking up cookies from designated cookie drops. Girls begin taking orders via tools like Smart Cookies or an optional paper order card to help with planning.

February 1: The 2020 Cookie Program begins! All cookies will be delivered to all troops and will be available for purchase to the general public at this time.

February 14: Cookie booth sales begin.

March 22: The 2020 Cookie Program ends.

Frequently Asked Questions

When can I start selling cookies?
February 1. However, from January 23-31, Girl Scouts can use tools like Smart Cookies or an optional order card to begin taking orders to plan their deliveries.

Will there be an order card?
Yes, but it is an optional tool available to girls, should they wish to use it. They can also use Smart Cookies to collect orders via their online storefront that can be delivered in-person or shipped directly to the cookie customer.

Where does the money go?
The money troops raise can be used to offset the cost of activities, outings, program supplies and so much more! The revenue earned by the troops can be used to fund troop camping weekends, program initiatives, attend badge workshops or even attend GSUSA’s G.I.R.L. 2020 in Orlando! There’s so much that can be done with the funds raised through the Cookie Program.

Why should my girl sell?
Being a part of the 2020 Cookie Program not only helps raise funds for your troop, but it also exposes your Girl Scout to critical career and life management skills—goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills and business ethics. Girls learn these valuable skills (and more!) by participating in the program.

How do I join the Cookie Program?
Talk to your Girl Scout’s troop leader about her troop’s participation. Most troops host an informational meeting for families prior to the start of the program. Want to step up and help your Girl Scout’s troop meet their Cookie Program goals? Visit gssjc.org/cookies for more information on how you can get involved. We’d love to have you!

When is it too late to join the Cookie Program?
Never! Girls and their troops can begin anytime should they wish to join after the official start of the program. The Cookie Program is a great way for troops to earn funds for their activities, and there is always a demand for Girl Scout Cookies – customers love them!