Tayto (Republic of Ireland)
|Founded||25 May 1954|
|Headquarters||Ashbourne, County Meath, Republic of Ireland|
|Republic of Ireland|
Tayto Crisps is a crisps and popcorn manufacturer within the Republic of Ireland, founded by Joe Murphy in May 1954. Tayto invented the first flavoured crisp production process. The first two seasoned crisps produced were Cheese & Onion and Salt & Vinegar. Companies worldwide sought to buy the rights to Tayto's technique. Tayto crisps are a cultural phenomenon throughout much of the Republic of Ireland, and "Tayto" is used by many Irish people, particularly in rural areas, as a metonym for crisps. In November 2010, Tayto opened their own theme park called "Tayto Park" near Ashbourne.
Tayto Crisps manufactured in the Republic should not be confused with Tayto in Northern Ireland, which is a separate brand. The Northern brand of Tayto licensed the name and recipes of the Southern brand, and is widely sold throughout Northern Ireland and parts of County Donegal, especially East Donegal and Inishowen.
The Republic of Ireland company Tayto is currently owned by Largo Foods. It was previously owned by Cantrell and Cochrane, and was based in Coolock, County Dublin, until their factory was closed in September 2005 when production was outsourced to Largo. Largo agreed to purchase the brand from C. & C. in May 2006 for €62.3 million.
Tayto crisps come in several flavours: Cheese & Onion, Salt & Vinegar, Smokey Bacon, Prawn Cocktail, and the limited edition flavour Tex Mex.
In the early 2000s, the company targeted the healthy eating market, with its low salt, low fat crisps, originally branded as Honest. Tayto currently refers to this range as the Happy & Healthy range.
Tayto also produce a number of other ranges of products:
Nuts and Popcorn Range
- Popcorn Pleasure
- Salted Peanuts
- Dry-roasted Peanuts
- Bacon Fries
- Mighty Munch – a corn snack available in Ireland that are shaped into the shape of a monster's hand or paw with three fingers and a hole in the palm.
- Jonny Onion Rings
Happy and Healthy Range
- Treble Crunch Farmhouse Cheddar & Spring Onion
- Treble Crunch Sour Cream & Onion
- Velvet Crunch
- Bistro Cheese & Onion
- Bistro Caribbean Chutney
- Occasions Thai Sweet Chilli
- Occasions Mature Cheddar Cheese & Red Onion
- Occasions Tortillas Nacho Cheese
- Occasions Tortilla Original Cool
- Occasions Party Mix Four Cheese and Mediterranean Herbs
- Occasions Bacon Fries
Tayto has used its mascot, Mr. Tayto, in a number of marketing campaigns. In the 2007 Irish General Election, Tayto ran an advertising campaign with Mr. Tayto as a fake election candidate. Tayto claimed that the number of spoiled votes in the Carlow–Kilkenny constituency indicate that some actually voted for their mascot, but this is purely speculative. Tayto was fined during the campaign for littering, due to its fake election posters being posted in public places.
In 2009, Tayto Ltd. published The Man Inside the Jacket, a fictional autobiography of Mr Tayto written by Maia Dunphy, Ciaran Morrison and Mick O'Hara. Tayto indicated that a percentage of the cover price would go to Irish charity Aware.
In 2006, Tayto tried to compel Irish band Toasted Heretic to destroy all copies of their album Now in New Nostalgia Flavour, which featured an image based on the trademarked "Mr Tayto" icon, although the image had been used since 1988 on Toasted Heretic's cassette album Songs for Swinging Celibates.
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