Snacking Through The Decades: 1970s and ’80s
The 1970s and ’80s certainly introduced some interesting clothing and hair styles to American culture, but many popular snacks and drinks were also born during these decades.
As fondue brought a brand-new element to cocktail parties and social gatherings, the snacking and beverage industries revolutionized their product offering with exciting new flavor combinations and concepts. Cup O’ Noodles and Oodles of Noodles gave Americans hot meals on-the-go, Mrs. Fields and Famous Amos brought a home-made taste to packaged cookies, and Yoplait yogurt made it possible for people to enjoy better-for-you yogurt any time, any place.
The 1970s also saw the introduction of Perrier water to the United States, as well as the first appearance of Starburst Fruit Chews, Twix Cookie Bars, Reese’s Pieces and Whatchamacallit. Americans also began to focus on more sustainable snacking during the ’70s with the introduction of the first recyclable soda bottles.
The 1980s welcomed better-for-you innovations like Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn, Snapple and Healthy Choice Frozen Dinners, but it also marked a resurgence in the popularity of candy. Airheads, gummy bears and worms, Caramello bars, Cow Tales, Nerds, Push Pops, Runts, Skittles, Smarties, Sour Patch Kids, and Spree all emerged during the ’80s. Gum was also popular, as brands like Big League Chew, Bubble Tape, Cry Baby and Rain-Blo could be found in abundance.
While the product selection in Canteen vending machines and Avenue Cs has certainly changed in the years since, some of these 1970s and ’80s snacks are still popular selections for today’s Americans.