Nabisco introduced Ritz crackers to the Philadelphia and Baltimore markets November 21, 1934. They were well received from the start with their unique light and buttery flavor and a reasonably low selling price of 19 cents a box.
The name was also important because it conjured up images of wealth by alluding to the posh Ritz-Carlton Hotel in New York, which elicited the promise of better times to come. This had great appeal to Americans during the Great Depression years.
The company produced over 5 billion of them in 1935, which worked out to 40 crackers for every man, woman and child in the U.S. By 1935, Nabisco was selling the cracked nationally and within three years it became the best-selling cracker in the world.