1998’s Best-Selling New Product: Wow Chips
Frito-Lay’s new Wow fat-free chips recorded $347 million in sales last year, making them the best-selling new product in the U.S. in 1998, according to a survey by market research group Information Resources Inc. Consumer groups have criticized the chips, saying an ingredient in them can cause gastrointestinal problems. Frito-Lay is a unit of PepsiCo. According to the annual survey, sales of Wow chips were nearly double those of the second-best-selling new product, Procter & Gamble Co.'s Downy Care fabric softener, which sold $176 million in the 36 weeks it was on the shelves last year. Colgate-Palmolive Co.'s Total toothpaste was the No. 3 seller, with $152 million in sales, and Polaroid Corp.'s Platinum film came in fourth at $149 million. Gillette Co.'s Mach3 razor rounded out the top five, with $147 million in sales in 24 weeks on the market.