Utz cheddar cheese snacks
Object: barrels of Utz cheddar cheese snacks
Location: SuperFresh, Society Hill (glowing orange in the early spring sunshine)
Background: I didn’t realize Utz and Snyder’s — two of America’s major snacking enablers — were in Hanover, Pennsylvania until I drove there to report on Emeco, manufacturer of the iconic Navy chair. I was already charmed by the idea of star designers like Philippe Starck and Ettore Sottsass (they’ve both collaborated with Emeco) alighting in this tiny town in southeastern PA. Passing the Utz and Snyder’s factories along the local road to Emeco was mind-blowing: Is there anything this town doesn’t produce?
Of course, the tiny town as a producer of iconic products should not have been that mind-blowing — this is the case all over Europe as it is here. Maybe the truly surprising thing was coming across a little town that continues to produce so many products while others are riddled with husks of factories.
Context: The Little Utz Girl is modern. She has her own Facebook fan page, and it has more than 3,500 fans. Category: “Public Figure.” Location: Hanover, PA. Her “Personal Interests” blurb begins, “Though I’m 89 years old, I’m really just a kid.” That’s a reference to the founding of Utz in 1921 by William and Sallie Utz who started by making 50 pound batches of Hanover Home Brand potato chips in their summer kitchen.
The Little Utz Girl, with her rosy cheeks and red bow, dates back to 1921. Back then she was older and more complex, with a pointy chin and nose; a sober, collared shirt; and no trace of those garish rouged cheeks. She looks down into the chip sack rather than meeting our gaze. This blog says the current version was designed in 1987.
I came across this awesome project by a graphic designer named Alex Egner. It’s a book of posters about and an origami balloon of the Little Utz Girl. I love the packaging — a “brown paper sack to mimic the original potato chip packaging.”
Whatever you may think of the Utz logo, that little girl has kept up with the times. Utz now makes gluten-free tortilla chips, and she’s concerned about where she’s throwing that paper sack after she’s emptied the bag and licked the last chip morsel off her fingers. On her Facebook page, she explains, “I also like to do projects and make things. It’s especially cool when it’s for a community organization (I like to volunteer) or if it helps the environment by reusing materials or recycling.”
I could come up with a lot of ways to reuse a spent cheese-snack barrel.Pin It