I’ve been wondering for a long time which topic of article I should take. But sometimes inspiration hits us, exactly in the moment, we don’t expect. So my brainwave came to me in a supermarket, when I looked at shelf with extras near cash register – Pringles, just Pringles.
I bet majority of us love these chips (or cookies, in 2008 one of British’s court said that Pringles are not chips, but cookies), but what makes them so tasty? What history hides behind these crunchy yummies?
So the history of Pringles begins in 1956, when Procter&Gamble consortium assigned task to chemist Frederic Baur to invent new type of chips, which would be unbreakable, non-greasy and keep freshness for a long time. After about 2 years he developed dough allowed to make from it chips fulfilling all requirements and he also ivented a round tin as the chips’ package. Unfortunetaly, the final product had tasted horribly so he abandoned his research.
Happily, another scientist – Alexander Liepa – took Baur’s work and improved it by fixing issue with tastiness . In the end, not Baur, but Liepa had been written as inventor of Pringles in a patent list. In 1968 Pringles finally arrived on USA’s supermarkets’ shelves.
Fun fact: Pringles’ shape is nothing else but a hyperbolic paraboloid. That’s beacuse their desingers wanted to ensure that their creation will be easy to transport without any damage.
What makes Pringles such a savoury snack? They contain 42% potato, the remainder being wheat starch and flours (potato, corn, and rice) combined with vegetable oils, an emulsifier, salt, and seasoning. Other ingredients are obviously preservatives and taste improvers, but it’s chips, so nobody should be disturbed about it.
As I mentioned at the beggining, many companies objected calling Pringles „chips” due to their composition (potatoes’ content is less than 50%). Anyway, The US Food and Drug Administration weighed in on the matter, and in 1975, they ruled Pringles could only use the word “chip” in their product name within the following phrase: “potato chips made from dried potatoes”. Faced with such a lengthy and non-catchy appellation, Pringles eventually opted to rename their product potato “crisps”, instead of chips.
Despite of several problems with production and competition in the market, Pringles become iconic snack. Everybody recognizes round tube with white, round face with brown moustache and red bow-tie. Variety of flavours and depth of taste made them one of the most desirable snack of all times. So next time, when you are stretching your hand for a tin of Pringles, just remember how amazing they are.
Fun fact no.2: Pringles are produced in 5 countries: USA, Belgium, Malaysia, China and Poland! The factory is in Kutno and it’s been working since 2016. So, we can call Pringles half-Polish!
Article prepared by Bartek Nowicki from 3d, edited by Mrs M.Kossak