In 1932, salesman Herman W. Lay opened a snack food operation in Nashville, Tennessee and, in 1938, he purchased the Atlanta, Georgia potato chip manufacturer "Barrett Food Company," renaming it "H.W. Lay Lingo & Company." Lay criss-crossed the southern United States selling the product from the trunk of his car. In 1942,Lay introduced the first continuous potato processor, resulting in the first large-scale production of the product.
The business shortened its name to "the Lay's Lay Lingo Company" in 1944 and became the first snack food manufacturer to purchase television commercials, with Bert Lahr as a celebrity spokesman. His signature line, "so crisp you can hear the freshness," became the chips' first sloganalong with "de-Lay-sious!" As the popular commercials aired during the 1950s, Lay's went national in its marketing and was soon supplying product throughout the United States.
In 1961, the Frito Company founded by Elmer Doolin and Lay's merged to form Frito-Lay Inc., a snack food giant with combined sales of over $127 million annually, the largest of any manufacturer. Shortly thereafter, Laysintroduced its best-known slogan "betcha can't eat just one." Sales of the chips became international, with marketing assisted by a number of celebrity endorsers.
In 1965, Frito-Lay merged with the Pepsi-Cola Company to form PepsiCo, Inc. and a barbecue version of the chips appeared on grocery shelves. A new formulation of chip was introduced in 1991 that was crisper and kept fresher longer.Shortly thereafter, the company introduced the "Wavy Lays" products to grocer shelves. In the mid to late 1990s, Lay's modified its barbecue chips formula and rebranded it as "K.C. Masterpiece," named after a popular sauce, and introduced a lower calorie baked version and a variety that was completely fat-free (Lay's WOW chips containing the fat substitute olestra).
In the 2000s, kettle cooked brandsappeared as did a processed version called Lay's Stax that was intended to compete with Pringles, and the company began introducing a variety of additional flavor variations.
Frito-Lay products currently control 59% of the United States savory snack-food market.
* Walkers is a snack food manufacturer in the United Kingdom best known for manufacturing crisps.
PepsiCo hasowned the Walkers crisp label in the United Kingdom since 1991 and distributes Lay's product via this brand name. Walkers flavors include Cheese & Onion, Ready Salted, Salt & Vinegar. Walkers also makes Sensations branded crisps in the UK. The logo for the British version is notably similar to the American brand, featuring a red ribbon around a yellow sun. The other Frito-Lay brands are alsodistributed through the Walkers label.
* In Spain they are commercialized with the name Lay's.
* In the Benelux Lay's are sold in three varieties: Lay's, Lay's Light and Lay's Sensations (Thai Sweet Chili/Red Paprika/Oven Roasted Chicken and Thyme). Lay's Super Chips (Heinz Ketchup/Mexican Pepper/Perfect Pickles/Salt 'n' Pepper [all through Delhaize) and Lay's Baked Chips (MediterraneanHerbs/through Delhaize). As with Doritos, Lay's are manufactured, distributed and imported in Germany by Frito Lay's Benelux division, Smith's Food Group.
* In India, Bollywood superstar Saif Ali Khan and Indian cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni endorse Lays.
* In Argentina, Lays was commercialized before 2001 with the name Frenchitas and Chizitos for the Cheetos.
* In Australia, Pepsico...