In North Carolina, the smell of success is the smell of barbecue. The Tar Heel State unveiled its newest state-sponsored lottery game last week: a scratcher ticket with a little something extra.

The $2 scratch-and-sniff tickets, aptly named “BBQ Bucks,” give off the smokey scent of BBQ. The top prize for the scratcher is $25,000, but don’t be too bummed if your ticket isn’t a winner. Every ticket holder is eligible for the “1,000 lbs. Pork Giveaway,” a redraw event where 10 winners will each win 100 pounds of pork and a new grill. (Not a bad consolation prize, if you ask us.)

bbq bucks ticket


The lottery is encouraging people to weigh in on the age-old North Carolina BBQ debate: “Which is Best, East or West?” BBQ connoisseurs aged 18 and up can cast their vote on Twitter by using the hashtags #bbqbucks and either #east or #west, or on the lottery’s Facebook page by commenting “EAST” or “WEST.” As for the smell, lottery officials decided to leave that neutral, choosing a “smoky BBQ” scent that purposely plays no favorites, according to lottery spokesman Chris Bushnell. He says,

“I can tell you that there was intention to make sure the ticket’s scent didn’t try to live up to the real thing, which the lottery is content to leave to BBQ experts, like the folks at Cooper’s. That’s why we went with a smoky scent.”


That smoky scent, though, has left some Carolinians scratching their heads. In a video from the BBQ Bucks roll-out event at Clyde Cooper’s BBQ in Raleigh, only one of the people interviewed could actually smell the BBQ scent.

1000lb pork giveaway
North Carolina isn’t the first state to come up with a pork-scented lotto scratcher. Colorado, Indiana, and New Hampshire all have bacon-scented lotto tickets (bring home the bacon!… get it?). It’s also come to our attention that Nebraska has a Sriracha-scented lotto ticket, so we’re moving there immediately.
According to the Charlotte Observer, the odds of winning the top prize from the hickory-smoked BBQ scratchers are one in 888,000. Good luck!