Aussie businesses could face hefty fines for messing with the traditional Anzac biscuit recipe.

The Department of Veterans Affairs warned that if bakeries and small businesses tamper with the classic biscuit they could be fined up to A$51,000 ($54,473), while individual sellers are looking at a A$10,000 fine.

Anzac biscuits have long been associated with the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) established in World War I. They were made by soldiers' wives and were popular because the ingredients kept well during naval transportation.

It's made with a combination of coconut, rolled oats and golden syrup and while there can be some substitution of ingredients for people who are gluten or lactose intolerant, it can't have any new ingredients.


"Definitely no addition of new ingredients that alter the traditional biscuit and its taste such as egg, chocolate chips or almonds," a Veterans' Affairs spokesperson said, while also emphasising that "the biscuits must be called 'Anzac biscuits' not 'Anzac cookies' or any other term".

A permit must be issued from Veterans' Affairs to sell products using the word "Anzac".

"Permits for Anzac biscuits are generally quickly approved as long as other regulations are met," the DVA spokesperson said.

Gelato Messina was asked by Veterans' Affairs to change the name of its "Anzac Bikkie" gelato to "Anzac Biscuit", a spokeswoman for the national dessert chain told Seven News.

"Can't be serious! World's gone mad," one person posted on Twitter about the fines.

"How about fine people this much for actual crimes, not a damn biscuit recipe," another added.

But others agreed saying it should be kept original.

"Anzac Day is sacred, and protected under law … So leave it alone."


"Too far? #Anzac is trade marked and intellectual property is protected. Fines are necessary."

Seven News reported that the warning comes as part of a wider crackdown by the federal government and RSL on businesses exploiting the Anzac spirit for commercial gain.

One of the earliest recipes for Anzac biscuits includes rolled oats, flour, golden syrup and sugar with later version adding coconut.