Sunday 30 April 2023

Vintage Crisp Packet: Saucey Tomato Wotsits (1984)

I warned you, when I looked at the vintage Smiths crisps mug, that the door had been opened to buying vintage crisp memorabilia. And, once that door is opened, there's no closing it. Which isn't good news for my bank balance, but it's excellent news for British Crisps. This means that, today, I'm going to treat you to a look at a 1984 packet of Saucey Tomato Wotsits.

Click for a high-res version

Part of a bulk buy on Ebay - don't worry, the others will also be featured in due course - this excellent condition packet has plenty going on. For a start, I can't even remember Saucey Tomato Wotsits. And I'm unable to pinpoint when they were available. But they were certainly available in 1984 as the Best Before date shows. And that name, Saucey Tomato, is it some sort of pun or a deliberate misspelling? Sadly, I suspect that will remain a mystery.

Thankfully, there are other things to be focussing on on the front of the packet. First, there's the mention of a Wotsits Activity Book. What could this involve? Well, Google fails to find any information, and there are no copies on Ebay. Luckily, the back of the packet informs us that it contains "games, puzzles and things to do, plus competitions with £5,000 worth of Fisher Price toys to be won." So, yes, it's all going on in the Wotsits Activity Book. Hopefully, I'll track one down one day.

Click for a high-res version

Back in 1984, you could secure the Wotsits Activity Book by simply collecting eight special Wotsits packets and then sending them off to an address in Sunderland. And you had to allow 28 days delivery. Remember when you had to allow 28 days delivery for everything you ordered? I don't miss those days, not one bit. The back of the packet also reveals no nutritional information, so Golden Wonder clearly didn't feel the need to guilt their patrons with calorie counts and saturated fat levels. A simpler and, indeed, unhealthier time.

Overall, I'm ecstatic to have this vintage crisp packet in the British Crisps collection. The design is undeniably 1980s, with its bouncy, bubbly Wotsits logo and, of course, the classic 1980s Golden Wonder logo. Better yet, you can even see into the packet, something which is very rarely seen these days. Plus, it's a lovely reminder of when you could save up crisp packets and exchange them for something. So, nostalgia-a-plenty and a fascinating look at how Wotsits used to be.

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