Lay's, a marquee brand from PepsiCo's Frito-Lay division, Plano, TX, is accepting submissions for its “Do Us A Flavor” contest through March 30. Fans nationwide are invited to submit their ideas for the next great potato chip flavor for the chance to win a $1 million grand prize. But this time around, there's an exciting new twist: Lay's is asking fans to also include the location that inspired each potential million-dollar idea. Later this year, four finalist flavors—representing cities and towns across the U.S.—will be fully developed, brought to store shelves and voted on by America.
“With two U.S. ‘Do Us A Flavor’ contests complete, millions of consumers from just about every corner of the country have weighed in on the next great potato chip flavor," says Jeff Klein, vice president of marketing, Frito-Lay. "Time and again, these fans have told us they've drawn inspiration from their favorite locations all around the U.S.—from the cities where they live to their favorite vacation spots to the places they've traveled to see friends and family. So this year, we decided to take America's love of diverse flavors to a whole new level and let it inspire our next contest winner.”
Fans can check out two new features developed through a collaboration between the Lay's brand and Google. The “Flavorcast Heat Map,” which is available at www.DoUsAFlavor.com, presents up-to-date data on the most-searched-for ingredients and flavors from around the country. Use of the map is optional and will not impact the outcome of the contest. Also new this year, consumers have the option to create their own “movie trailers” based on their flavor submissions as a way to engage with the contest and introduce their submissions to others.
Fans can submit their flavor suggestions on www.DoUsAFlavor.com, through Twitter (follow @Lays for details), through the Lay's Facebook Page or by using their cell phone to text FLAVOR to CHIPS (24477). To submit, fans are asked to provide their name, flavor name, up to three ingredients, the chip style, the city and state that inspired their submission and a brief description or inspiration story for their flavor.
As part of this year's contest, a judging panel made up of chefs, foodies and flavor experts will narrow down the contest submissions to four regionally inspired finalist flavors that will then be fully developed by Frito-Lay's culinary experts and brought to market this summer. From there, it will be up to fans to vote for the finalist flavor they want to see stay on store shelves. The winning flavor—as determined by fan votes—will be revealed in the fall. The three runner-up finalists will each win $50,000 in prize money, with the grand prize winner taking home $1 million or 1 percent of his or her flavor's net sales (whichever is higher) for the period July 15, 2015 through July 15, 2016.
PepsiCo has held “Do Us A Flavor” contests in numerous countries with consumers suggesting millions of ideas for chips flavors around the world. In July 2012, the Lay's brand launched its first "Do Us A Flavor" contest in the U.S., which resulted in Lay's Cheesy Garlic Bread submitted by Karen Weber-Mendham in Land O'Lakes, WI, being selected as the first million-dollar winner. The contest returned to the U.S. in January 2014. After more than 14 million flavor submissions, Lay's Kettle Cooked Wasabi Ginger submitted by Meneko Spigner McBeth in Deptford, NJ, was crowned the winner. Lay's Kettle Cooked Wasabi Ginger flavor returns to stores this month in its official "winner" packaging.