I have friends who live off of Pop-Tarts. They eat them as a quick on the go breakfast, snacks, lunch, even dinner. Usually they don't bother to heat them up in a toaster, just crack open the bad and eat them. I will be honest, I'm not particularly into them, not even the chocolate ones and I'm a chocoholic.
Pop-Tarts have been around since 1964 when they were introduced by Kelloggs but they didn't introduce the first toaster pastry. The idea came from dog food. You read that correctly! Dog food. Apparently, in 1963 or so, Post's pet food division created Gaines Burgers, a dog food half way between canned and dried that didn't need to be refrigerated.
Post used the same technology to create a fruit filled pastry that could easily stored and shipped. Once Post had the concept, they announced the product, "Country Squares" in 1963 but it was months away from hitting the supermarket. Kellogg's took advantage of the delay and introduced Pop Tarts, their version of a shelf stable toaster pastry.
Before introducing Pop-Tarts, they marketed them in Cleveland in 1963 to see how they'd do and were an instant hit. When they introduced Pop Tarts in 1964, they came in four unfrosted flavors: Dutch Apple, Raspberry, Concord Grape, and Brown Sugar Cinnamon. Kellogg's planned to name this product "Fruit Scones" but decided to change the name to Pop Tarts after Andy Warhol's pop art of the same time period.
The success of the trial marketing convinced Kellogg's to increase initial production for 10,000 to 45,000 cases and within two weeks of their original release, Pop-Tarts sold out completely. Kellogg's had to publish an note about running out of the product so fast. Within a short time, the next ship of Pop-Tarts hit the shelves.
Current Pop-Tarts are a bit different than the original ones because when first produced, Pop-Tarts had a diagonal perforation the consumer would separate the pastry into two parts so the gooey filling oozed out. The original Pop-Tarts also had rounded edges instead of being square as they are now. In addition, they were packaged two to a packet because the machine that wrapped them in foil was quite expensive and it was cheaper to do two in one package.
According to Kellogg's, strawberry and brown sugar cinnamon are the two top selling flavors. Currently Kellogg's sells over 2 billion Pop-Tarts every year. The frosted version has 10 fewer calories than the unfrosted one. Back in 2001, Pop-Tarts were one of two items to the Afghani to promote good will. At one point, the company made both a Pop-Tarts cereal in the 90's, special edition college Pop-Tarts in 2012 for 5 colleges and available in 5 states, and in 2010 Pop-Tarts had its own store in Times Square but it did not last long. But the number of this product sold has been on the rise over the past 32 years.
I will admit the only ones I ever enjoyed were the toaster danish they used to make but they have been disconnected. Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear.