Late last month a British appellate court ruled that Pringles are potato chips, despite the fact that potatoes only make up 42% of a Pringle.
As we’ve seen, there is much deception in the world of food and marketing, but what made this decision so noteworthy was that Procter & Gamble, Pringles’ corporate parent, argued that Pringles aren’t potato chips.
This may come as a huge surprise, but the case had to do with money. In England, potato chips—unlike most food—are subject to a 15% national tax. P&G had actually won a lower court decision last year, using the less-than-50% argument to gain a short-lived victory. The latest ruling, though, will cost P&G about $30 million per year.
Is it any wonder why P&G took the stance it did?