Doritos Creator Dies, But Unhealthy Snacks Live On

The creator of Doritos snack tortilla chips, Arch West, has died at the age of 97. And like his fellow snack creator before him, Fredric J. Baur, who invented the Pringles packaging, West’s creation will be incorporated into his final send off. His family plans to sprinkle Doritos on his final resting place.

West was a marketing exec for Frito Lay when he pitched the idea for Doritos and had worked on the J-E-L-L-O campaign in the 1960s before joining the company. Just a few months ago he gave the big thumbs down to a new flavor Doritos was considering, cheeseburger.

The Washington Post uses the sad occasion of West’s death to reconsider Doritos’ place in the pantheon of couch potato snacking “foods.” The brand has already announced a Super Bowl promotion that will include Andy Samberg (SNL skitster and Mark Zuckerberg impersonator), The Lonely Island, and customer voting. But it’s not about the marketing. It’s about the chips.

“The continued presence of MSG, of three different artificial food colors, of partially hydrog­enated glory — it speaks to the belovedness of the nacho cheese corn chip that these ingredients are allowed to continue thriving in their high-sodium sanctuary,” the newspaper writes.

Wherever you are Arch West, let there be Cool Ranch.

Publish date: September 27, 2011 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT