Do You Really Care if Sun Chips Bags are Loud?

Thirty-three workers remain underground in a Chilean mine and authorities estimate they will be trapped for several more months. We still do not have a climate bill and millions of Pakistan children are at risk for flood-related disease. As I write, a bit of the polar ice cap melts and Americans continue to throw away more than they recycle. But, there is another serious, pressing and urgent debate raging in this country. As I survey the important social and environmental issues of our day I would be remiss if I did not take note of one of the ongoing conflicts of the hour: the decibels generated by an eco-friendly Sun Chips bag.

Indeed, the press and buzz generated by this admittedly loud bio-bag would almost, almost, convince an observer that this actually matters. The story has been reported by the Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post and even the Today Show. There are numerous YouTube videos and the Twitter buzz on the topic is alive and well.

But perhaps it is Facebook that best demonstrates the importance of this chip bag to my fellow Americans and highlights the great divide the issues causes. On the right side we have the Sun Chips Facebook fans, devoted to their snack, bag and all. On the left we have the noise haters.  With 40,000 plus fans to date, the latter group is indeed a small army of quiet bag advocates.

I know what you are thinking, oh champions of discrete bags: “it is all for fun, only a joke”. For most who have weighed in on the story: the Facebook fans, the Tweeters, the videographers, bloggers, journalists and TV hosts, yes, that is true. No one is really that concerned about this loud bag issue, right?  All a big national past time laugh, yes?

I am sure it is. I am sure most of us have put this issue in its proper perspective, ranking in importance with Lindsay Lohan’s drug situation and the continued debate about whether or not Elvis is really dead. But for those few of you who are actually perturbed by the loud chip bag, perhaps I can offer a few suggestions to help you with your woes.

First, may I suggest you step out of the closet, shake your loud bag with pride and eat your chips in PUBLIC? Yes, I am talking to you, closet snackers, who feel guilty for craving a Sun Chip over an apple. One Facebook fan (haters page) made the point clear. She was frustrated by the noise because it prohibited her late night secret noshing. No more sneaking bags at the desk at the office? Crunch away, I say, and do not be afraid to have a less than righteous snack.

And for those of the greener sort, let the loud bag be your eco rebel yell. Make your tree hugging statement and show your support for solar-powered chips by being bold enough to be loud. After all, it is cheaper than an organic bamboo t-shirt.

And, if you are still burdened, if you have tweeted and blogged and chatted and Facebooked yourself silly and still have energy to put to good use then I have another idea for you: talk to Frito-Lay. Don’t ask them why their Sun Chips bag is loud, but why their other bags are not. Ask them when we can expect super-noisy, ultra rude Lay’s bags that are more Earth-friendly and are made with solar energy. How about Sun Chips that are also organic? When can we expect all Frito-Lay products to have the Chip Tracker, so we can trace where all products are made?

For my part, I am going to eat chips when an organic apple won’t do and I am going to eat Sun Chips because they are better (from a green perspective) than others. I might also look into Frito-Lay stock. With all this free press and awesome accidental marketing, it might be a good time to invest. I am kidding, of course. The last sentence was my attempt at LOL. Now, about that climate bill that didn’t pass…

Leslie is a Sustainable MBA student at Green Mountain College. Study interests include sustainability, social responsibility and the power of corporate and non-profit partnerships to bring about positive change. Other areas of interest include social media, fundraising and public policy. She holds a Certificate in Nonprofit Management and is certified in the Global Reporting initiative for Sustainability Reporting. Additionally, she holds an MA in Organizational Management and a BS in Leisure Management. On the rare occasions when she is not studying, she enjoys writing, reading, running, nature walks and yoga. She hopes to use her skills, talents and education to make a positive impact with an environmentally and socially conscious organization. Feel free to connect with her on LinkedIn.