I love chocolate. I never heard about Twinkies until I read the fascinating article written by Steven Bertoni for FORBES. I am more on the healthy side. What I mean with this is that I prefer real food over processed. I like to cook at home and pack my lunch. When I saw on TV that Twinkies would disappear from shelves, I was surprised how people reacted to this news. It was like the mourning of something precious lost.
Are Twinkies Special?
I asked my friends what it is unique about Twinkies? They told me that it is junk food. Okay, I thought, more people will switch to healthy alternatives, such as squash or carrots. It is a joke because nobody survives with few vegetables, but choosing real food over bleached flour and sugar would a lot healthier.
After reading the article on FORBES, I think that the revival of Twinkies is a unique event. It is a story which forces me to believe that there are so many aspects of life, which are not easy to grasp. This brand has 1 billion in revenues, millions of fans and 80 years of legacy. It is understandable because Twinkies has connections with few generations.
Twinkies are part of pop culture. I could moralize, how it is unhealthy, but people do not care what doctors tell them. It is saying that old habits die hard.
The history of Twinkies, started in 1930 during the Great Depression. The Howdy Doody Show and Batman comics made Twinkies a part of pop culture. One interesting fact about them that Twinkies associated with the assassination of San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and City Supervisor Harvey Milk. Lawyers of killer Dan White argued that junk food, which was full of sugar, triggered his psychosis.
What kind of impact on humans does the sugar have on you, you can check Nancy Appleton’s Lick The Sugar Habit. She has a website too, www.nancyappleton.com. Here she provides reasons why sugar is bad for us. She takes information from scientific journal articles. A few things which attracted my attention were that sugar is an addictive substance and sugar could be intoxicating, similar to alcohol.
Ups and Downs of Sweet Indulgence
Back to Twinkies. They made by the Hostess company, which changed owners over the years. International Telephone& Telegraph, Ralston Purina, Ripplewood Holdings were owners of Twinkies. Unfortunately, despite earlier popularity, Hostess Brand Inc., filed for bankruptcy in January 2012. Operating losses, pension expenses, baker union’s strike trigger end of the lovable brand of Twinkies.
Most people probably do not mind. Finally, people can switch to healthy, nutritious foods, start to live wholesome lives. Bye, bye Twinkies, we are starting a new life, we will be fit and active, we will lead aspiring lives.It is funny, that what is ideal for you or me, is unacceptable for somebody who loves Twinkies. I guess scientists can explain relationships with foods like Twinkies, as something that gives comfort but takes away well- being.
A Light in Tunnel for Twinkies
Anyway, C. Dean Metropoulos came to the rescue of Twinkies. For 35 years he recovered many brands from disaster, such as PAM cooking spray. In 2000, FORBES named him Mr. Shelf Space. He created an estimated $2.2 billion fortune for himself. Impressive, isn’t it?
Twinkies were born again. Now they are produced with other cakes in clean, spacious factories.They have a prolonged shelf life, thanks to the formula of starches, invented with food lab of Corbin and reduced costs. Shelf life doubled. Now it is good for 65 days.
It is something special, how after four months when Metropoulos took over, Twinkies came back. Television, the Internet, social media were excited to announce the rebirth of Twinkies. Television personality, book author, and the weatherman Al Roker tossed Twinkies to fans. They were on Jimmy Fallon and the Ellen show. Marketing Twinkies on college campuses, promoting with celebrities such as Will Farell, Snoop Dog, and Howard Stern opened gates to many orders from stores.
Praise from Bankers
According to Forbes article, ” What they have done at Hostess should be a Harvard Business School case study on how to turn around a business.” In future, Metropoulos considers making more deluxe versions of Twinkies. The growing Hispanic market is on his target too.
This excellent management story shows how smart minds can reach victories in areas, where everything seemed lost.
How About Healthy Side?
Do you ask how about the nutritional value of Twinkies? I doubt if somebody cares about this issue. Most important that customers like it. They missed it. Emotional connections are strong despite information, which is not favorable to Twinkies. Nobody could argue, that this product is not tasty or looks terrible. The choice is up to customer and customer is always right.
Always will be people who prefer so-called junk food over fresh but healthy food. Maybe someday will be Twinkies with squash filling, who knows?
I wonder if in business world people must show assertiveness. I mean what kind of business they supposed to lead. The company which serves people, makes the positive impact or just demonstrates the brilliance of management in every area, where opportunity shows up?
Now I know that is going on. It is the same as with all junk food: sugar addiction. The body craves nutrients. We look for something pleasant to fulfill this gap, but the choice is harmful. Junk food does not have vital nutrients such minerals, enzymes, fatty acids or proteins. Empty calories turn to fat and sit nicely around the waist, on abdomen suppressing vital organs.