Just the other day, I bought a bag of "Salsa Mesquite chips (on sale, of course, why ever pay sticker price when Kettle chips are frequently on sale?). When I tried to open the bag, I thought to myself that the bag sure was sealed well and that I better use scissors (instead of ripping the bag open) tp cut the top to avoid potentially having the contents explode out of the bag (everyone has experienced this at least once, right?).
Enough of the overview.
Last night I perused the Oct issue of Consumer Reports and in the "Up Front" section of this issue is titled "Packages that need a makeover". While this segment wasn't limited to just the five products with photos, you guessed it, there was photo of a bag of Kettle chips with the bag messily torn and chips flying.
Here's the text:
"Kettle chip bag
The issue. You need a strong but delicate touch to pull the bag open withour causing it to split apart and spill chips.
The company's response. "It's always great to hear from a fan...We want you to know that we are always looking to improve based on feedback from our consumers." Then the company offered us coupons."
As noted in the accompanying text, Kettle chip bags are not the only ones needing a makeover (just the only one presented in a photo!). Chips are a low margin business and "There isn't a lot of motivation for companies to rip out equipment in their plants that's bought and paid for and invest in new machinery, no matter how horrible the packaging."
Not the end of the world, and as noted no press is bad press, right?
It gets "better". Same issue of Consumer Reports (Oct) has a feature titled "Store brands to savor".
References about ten food items; brand name v one or more store brands.
For "cashews", there's a photo of Emerald jumbo whole cashews for the name brand.
"Take-Away: With nuts, freshness is key. Emerald fared worse than store brands because some of its cashews tasted slightly stale. The roast level varied slightly amoung products but not enough to matter. Let price be your guide..."
C.R. recommends Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Sam's Club, Walmart, Costco, Kmart, and Target brand cashews over Emerald. Smaller photos of these brands were also presented.
For the "freddies" of this message board, yes, I am long.