Brand-owner PepsiCo says the different way men and women eat chips is the driving force behind creating new chip products for the female market.
February 6, 2018
by Canadian Packaging staff
According to PepsiCo chief executive officer Indra Nooyi, the company has done its market research, that shows that female snack eaters would like it if their chips weren’t so loud.
Last week, on the podcast Freakonomics Radio, Nooyi says there is a difference between the way men and women enjoy their chips.
She notes that: “When a lot of the young guys eat their chips, they love their Doritos and they lick their fingers with great glee. And when they reach the bottom of the bag, they pour the little broken pieces into their mouth because they don’t want to lose that taste of the flavor and the broken chips in the bottom.
“Women I think would love to do the same but they don’t, they don’t like to crunch too loudly in public, and you know they don’t lick their fingers generously and they don’t like to pour the little broken pieces and the flavor into their mouth,” Nooyi explains.
While Nooyi stopped short of saying PepsiCo was now creating chips for women and chips for men, she did note that the same product could be designed and packaged differently.
She says PepsiCo would soon launch a new range of snacks for women, but did not specify if these would be a new range or a sub-branch of existing snacks.
On the podcast, Nooyi says that PepsiCo’s design and innovations teams have gone to consumer homes to examine how PepsiCo products were stores in the pantry or fridge.
Nooyi sums up: “The whole design capability we built in PepsiCo was to allow design to work with innovation, not just on packaging colors but to go through the entire cycle and say all the way to the product in the pantry or how it’s being carried around, or how they eat it in the car or drink it in the car, what should be the design of the product, the package, the experience, so that we can influence the entire chain.”
While some people on social media have criticized Nooyi for her comments, deriding it as “sexist”, the concept of creating snacks for the individual sexes is hardly new—it’s called marketing for your target audience.
Still, on February 5, 2018, PepsiCo issued a statement that tried to squelch any sexist chatter: “We already have Doritos for women—they’re called Doritos, and they’re enjoyed by millions of people every day. At the same time, we know needs and preferences continue to evolve and we’re always looking for new ways to engage and delight our consumers.”
The takeaway from Monday’s PepsiCo statement is that rather than create Doritos, Cheetos or Lays for women, the megabrand owner will facilitate a new chip snack with its own separate brand identity.
And, for the record, while the majority of men will rip open a chip bag to get every tiny morsel of product from it—even resorting to pouring the bad down their throat, some male snackers hate the orange Cheetos dust on the fingers—especially when so many snack while working, leading to orange keyboards and phones, and yes, Canadian Packaging may be speaking from experience.
If PepsiCo does bring out a snack chip catering to the women’s market, can men eat it too? That’s just a silly question, however. Food products are made for everyone, even if the marketing may be skewed towards one demographic over another.
For more information on PepsiCo, visit www.pepsico.com.
And, in case you missed it, here is PepsiCo’s spectacular 2018 Superbowl ad, staring Peter Dinklage (of Game of Thrones), and Morgan Freeman (the actor you get when you need someone to play a president of a country), lip-synching to the rhymes of Busta Rhymes and Missy Elliot, respectively.