Unbelievable Yet Real Stories Behind Famous Food Mascots

The use of endearing mascots is a marketing strategy that helps foods stand out. You are most probably able to recognize quite a few brands by their mascots. Some food products and brands have long standing visibility in the public thanks to some sort of cartoon character or some fictional being such as the leprechaun for Lucky Charms and Mr. Peanut for Planters. Not all mascots are fictional though. Here are five famous food mascots that are all real people with real stories.

1. Famous Amos

Famous Amos is a well-liked brand of cookies which was founded in 1975 in Los Angeles by Wally Amos. He was well known in the entertainment industry for being a talent agent for William Morris. To encourage celebrities to meet with him and sign a deal with the agency, Wally Amos sent them homemade chocolate chip cookies which he prepared. The cookies were so tasty that he was convinced by his friends to start a cookie store in Los Angeles, California. He was the face of the business.

2. Little Debbie

Little Debbie is the blue-eyed little girl with a straw hat on the front of the box of an array of confectionaries. In 1960, O.D Mckee made snack cakes. When trying to figure out a name for them, someone suggested that the cakes be named after a family member. A photo of his four-year-old granddaughter, Debora “Debbie” Mckee, wearing a straw hat caught his attention and he thought she would be the perfect mascot. He named the cakes after her.  Funny thing is he never told her parents of his decision, not until her face was on the boxes and on shelves. Today, Debora Mckee Fowler, known as Little Debbie is not so little. She’s the executive vice president of Mckee Food.

3. Colonel Sanders

Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) is a well-known American fast food restaurant which brings to consumers tasty fried chicken. Colonel Harland David Sanders was the founder of KFC and was also the brand ambassador and the symbol of the company. Those who are familiar with the brand will recognize the goatee and spectacles. Sanders was a blacksmith, worked for a railroad, had a law degree and founded a ferry boat company. He later had a service station where he sold chicken to his customers and things took off from there.

4. Chef Boyardee

If you’re a lover of canned pasta products then you have most likely come across the Chef Boyardee brand which is sold internationally by Conagra Brands. This line of gourmet products was the creation of Ettore Boiardi known as Hector Boyardee, who was an Italian-American chef. Boyardee was a culinary genius and the founder of Chef Boyardee. Though he sold the company in 1946, he continued to be the brand’s mascot. His image as the chef was placed on the packaging and he remained as a consultant and the spokesman.

5. Orville Redenbacher

Anyone who loves a high-quality, delicious, white, fluffy snack has certainly welcomed Oreville Redenbacher’s Gourmet Popping Corn into their kitchens. The face of this brand is that man who was keen on wearing suspenders with a bowtie- Orville Redenbacher. While he served as the mascot with his face on the packaging, Redenbacher was the brains and talent behind the product. From the age of twelve, Redenbacher took an interest in growing corn. He experimented with popcorn for several years until he perfected it in 1965. He was featured in numerous advertisements for the brand until his passing in 1995.

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