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Language Development Sessions

To illustrate her point, Becky re-created one of the company's so-called language development sessions. She instructed everyone to taste a mixture of sugar and butter as well as try to apply that mixture on a chip. "Is this really the reference we want?" she asked. (The answer turned out to be no.) A similar system was applied when developing the brand's Maple Bacon potato chips; there, the team discovered maple bacon attributes that were likable (caramelized, slightly sweet, smoky, lingering flavors) as well as undesirable (artificial, corn-syrup-like, fried doughy).

From there, the research and development team helps transform flavor targets into an actual flavored dry blend that is tested on chips in very small batches. Many prototypes won't work, but that's par for the course; the team develops over 400 flavor prototypes each year.

Photo: Susannah Chen

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