A World of Varieties - Europe
Means 'Mega Bag' in Finland
Swedish company Old London Wasa (OLW) is one of the oldest and most established companies. Favourite flavours include Grill & Pepper, and Sour Cream & Sweet Chilli. BBQ are a popular Estrella flavour. Estrella are similarly established, and were taken over by Kraft Foods in 2008.
Potato Chips are a complicated structural business in Scandinavia, as Maruud AS, who owned the Maruud Potetgull (Potato Gold), brand, and the afore-mentioned Estrella. Kraft now controls those interests. Lightly Salted, Paprika and the delightfully monikered Biff Og Lok, which we want to know the translation off less than try them, are popular flavours. Sorlands Balsamic and Mozarella are however, tried and trusted favourites.
Danish brand of Chips, KiMs is owned by Finnish company Chips AB, which is owned by the Norwegian Okla Group. Getting away from the complicated ownership issues once and for all, KiMs standard salt and pepper based flavours are popular, along with Mexican Fiesta.
Finland’s market leading Taffel’s Sour Cream & Pepper and Sweet Chilli are big sellers.
The best-known savoury snack trade-mark in Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia is Texas Popcorn, which also make Cheese & Onion, Garlic and Bacon.
Popular Russian flavors include Crab, Mushroom & Sour cream, Salted Cucumber, and intriguingly, Red Caviar.
Moving a little further west through Europe, Polish folk enjoy Lays flavors; Cheese, Salted, Paprika, Green Onion, Chicken with Spices, Fromage, Hot Green Peppers, and Cucumber & Guacamole.
Romanian Lay's flavours include Salt, Cheese, Paprika, BBQ, Sour Cream & Dill.
For much of the Potato Chip history, Germany was a bit of a non-participant, with just a few bland flavors, but in the past two decades Germany has enjoyed a Potato Chips explosion. It now has a wide range of flavors. Lay’s even has a factory there. Most of the Crisps that are available in the UK are available under similar branding in Germany. Intersnack’s Funny Frisch brand is among the most popular, with Paprika one of the more popular flavors.
Lay’s dominate in the former Eastern Bloc region of Europe, but Czech brand, Bohemia Chips are a somewhat cheaper alternative; Salt and Paprika being popular varieties.
Romania, and the smaller nations of the region featured fairly plain flavors until Lay’s timed their move into the region perfectly. Intersnack also enjoy a market share.
Estrella (Kraft, remember) owns Lyuks Potato Chips and Cerezos Corn Curls in the Ukraine.
In Greece and Cyprus, Lay's are made and packed by Tasty Foods and Corina Snacks. Mediterranean flavors include; Olive & Tomato, Feta Cheese, Oregano, and Tzatziki.
Crik Crok Paprika and Original are among the unoriginal, but still popular flavors in Italy. Established in 1936, San Carlo are the most historic manufacturer in Italy, where they also call our favourite savory snack, Crisps. They have added an Olive Oil flavour to their traditional ranges.
Zweifel’s Paprika Potato Chips are among the more popular domestic makes, although again, imports are the mainstay of the market in Switzerland.
The Benelux region, sees Lay’s dominate. Apart from the standard flavors available in the Netherlands, others include, Bell Pepper, Barbecue Bacon and Cheese & Onion. In 2010, a Lay’s campaign saw three new varieties voted on and added to the usual ranges; Mango Red Chilli, Patatje Joppie (Joppiesaus is a regional mayonnaise style sauce that is usually put of French Fries and erm, Potato Chips), and Indonesian Grilled Pork, or Babi Pangang, as it is called.
The more savory Bicky Sauce won a similar Belgian contest, which led to Bicky Crisp and Indian Curry adding to the flavors.