If you ever sliced open your tongue while desperately trying to lick the last remaining morsels of pudding from a pull-top lid, it is safe to say that you might remember a childhood delight of the 70s and beyond called Snack Pack. Introduced in 1969, they remain a staple of lunchboxes (or brown bags, if you prefer) to this day.
In the late 60s, the folks over at Hunt-Wesson Foods realized that a lot of people, young and old, were packing lunches those days, some 12 billion of them. Thinking these folks might enjoy including a self-contained dessert that required no refrigeration, the company began test-marketing a line of puddings and fruits. Dubbed Snack Pack, the products proved to be an instant success.
Snack Pack arrived on store shelves in bundles of four aluminum cans, each with a handy pull-tab top. Hunt would advertise that the can’s interior was coated with a layer of enamel to ensure that you didn’t taste the can, but most people old enough to remember the canned version will attest that there was a decidedly metallic flavor. In 1984, the company switched to a plastic cup (and a much safer lid), prompting many former aficionados to insist that the pudding’s flavor suffered dramatically as a result.
Evidence suggests this is true. After all, a pudding must be mighty good to, not only persuade you to fillet your tongue for just one more taste, but also repeat the same mistake on numerous occasions in the future, at least until 1984. Folks that started eating Snack Pack after the switch know not what they missed.
If finding a Snack Pack pudding at the bottom of your lunch ever brought a smile to your face, we welcome your thoughts in our comments section, as we tip our hats to the best pudding snack in existence … at least until Bill Cosby offered us the frozen variety on a stick.