Doritos Faces Backlash Following Rumored 'Lady-Friendly' Chips

Following rumors of PepsiCo's preparations to launch “lady-friendly chips” that would boast a quieter crunch and a less messy composition, the company has since released a statement denouncing the idea in response to the heavy flak from social media users. But first, here's a debriefing on the situation:

On Feb. 6, The New York Times published an interview with PepsiCo chief executive officer Indra Nooyi, in which she said of the brand's female customer base: “They don’t like to crunch too loudly in public ... And they don’t lick their fingers generously, and they don’t like to pour the little broken pieces and the flavor into their mouth.”

Sure, perhaps that's how she feels about it, but I know I've never had a problem eating Doritos in public. After this information was released, social media blew up and PepsiCo received plenty of backlash from vocal critics.

The New York Post reported that a spokesman from the Women’s Equality Party said, “Companies that perpetuate these tired gender stereotypes will continue to lose out on the single biggest consumer group: women.”

And it's true — while PepsiCo may have believed this would be a great marketing idea, it accomplished the opposite of their desired effect. Reality check: It's 2018. Women don't need their own type of chips to feel comfortable eating in public, and have certainly not come this far to be other-ed by companies launching sexist food products.

Nooyi added that the company was considering manufacturing the new line in a smaller package — one that fits in your purse, because women just love keeping snacks in their purses. The general air of her comments merely reinforced harmful stereotypes — and as it turns out, most women are so not here for it. Once the Times' interview was released, it demonstrated the power of the female voice through social media.

Without much surprise, Doritos was quick to come out with a statement knocking the idea. A week later, they announced that this was a rumor, and there was never a plan to create “lady-friendly” chips at all.

Fortunately, albeit contradictory to their previous statements, they at least publicly recognized that most of us aren't thinking, "Wow, I’d sure love to buy some FEMALE Doritos!” 

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