14/12/2016 10:11 AM AEDT | Updated 14/12/2016 2:57 PM AEDT

2016 Word Of The Year Is A Mouthful Of 'Democracy Sausage'

Peak Australia right here.

Alex Ellinghausen / Fairfax Media
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and ALP candidate Angelo Tsirekas get their democracy sausage on.

The longest federal election campaign in history happened in 2016, and with that came a fair amount of anticipation for the customary voting-day sausage sizzle.

The always-saucy, often-burnt charity sausage sandwich dominated conversation so effectively that a new term was born: the 'democracy sausage', and it's been named the Australian National Dictionary Centre's Word of the Year 2016.

Here's the instance of 'democracy sausage' over the last five years on Google.

It had some tough contenders over the last 12 months, including 'shoey', 'Census fail' and 'smashed avo'.

Here's the centre's definition for new pop culture terms in 2016.

Democracy sausage

A barbecued sausage served on a slice of bread, bought at a polling booth sausage sizzle on election day.

The use of the term (first recorded in 2012) increased significantly during the federal election in 2016, especially as a result of the popularity of several websites set up to help voters locate polling stations with sausage sizzles.

Glen McCurtayne / Fairfax Media
Tony Abbott digs in.

The proliferation of the term on social media at this time helped establish the wider use of democracy sausage in the community.


The potential cutting of ties with the British monarchy, or the departure of Australia from the United Nations.

Named Ausexit on the pattern of 'Brexit' (formed from 'Britain' or 'British' and 'exit'), it gained some momentum in the media thanks to the Australian Republican Movement.

Census fail

The failure of the Australian Bureau of Statistics website on census night.

The site was down for two days and resulted in a storm of criticism for the census fail from the public, the media, and the Prime Minister.


Getty Images
Daniel Ricciardo nails a shoey.

The act of drinking an alcoholic beverage out of a shoe, especially to celebrate a sporting victory.

The shoey is an Australian phenomenon that shot to international fame in 2016, thanks to Australian racing driver Daniel Ricciardo. He came second in the German Grand Prix in August, and on the winners' podium he poured champagne into his shoe and drank it.

Smashed avo

A popular cafe breakfast, typically consisting of a thick slice of toast topped with chopped or mashed seasoned avocado.

Getty Images/iStockphoto
Avocado toast is the problem.

Smashed avo achieved notoriety as a symbol of Generation Y's alleged preference for an indulgent lifestyle over saving for a house deposit after a column by Bernard Salt.

Read the full report here.