i don’t get it

Why are food and drink items at public events known as “concessions”? What is being conceded? Is the buyer conceding something, or is the seller conceding something? What’s going on??

4 thoughts on “i don’t get it

  1. okay here’s what i get out of it.
    i’m using a merriam-webster collegiate dictionary.
    if i’m reading this correctly, the word comes from latin “concessio” which meant… to concede.
    the definition under 2.b says “GRANT” and 2.c says “(1): a grant of land or property esp. by a government in return for services or for a particular use (2): a right to undertake and profit by a specified activity (3): a lease of a portion of the premises for a particular purpose; also: the portion least or the activity carried on”
    so, basically, what im gathering is… at some point in history, i would guess around the whole robin-hood era in europe, governments would grant or “concede” land to peasants/middle class, whatever, get them to work it for the government’s benefit. this term was later extended to include similar operations, presumably in the private sector.
    as we all know, a characteristic of free market economies is that some entities have the ability to produce goods better than others (ie, a farmer in hawaii can produce coconuts with a smaller input of resources than one in siberia). therefore, its easier for the managers of a stadium to lease out some of their real-estate to food companies (and reap a percentage of the profits) than it is for them to try and set up food themselves.
    one can only assume that this further extension of the “concession” principle was also a further extension of the associated terminology, and, logically, we can assume that it was only natural for the consumer to name the product of these booths – the food – after the very establishments they were sold in.
    speaking of which, did anybody see LSU dominate duke the other night? cause i did.

  2. So you’re saying the stadium is conceding the right to sell food to Hawaiian coconut farmers? Seems like a stretch.

    LSU sucks.

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