Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Dear Walkers

It has been some time since I wrote one of my letters to crisp manufacturers and feel that a new one is long overdue. So without further delay, I have today crafted this masterpiece to my friends at Walkers, a copy of which I trust you will enjoy.

Consumer Services Department

Tuesday 8th October 2013

Subject: Meaty Multipacks

Dear Walkers,

It has been some time since I have had an opportunity to write to you regarding my exciting adventures in the world of crisps. Unfortunately I had to resign my position with the CTBBOFOC (Campaign to bring back old flavours of crisps) due to a clash of interests with an exciting new role I have taken on in the food industry. More of that later. However, I am assured by my erstwhile colleague, Gerald Mincen, that he will be able to handle things in my absence.

You will recall, or possibly not recall as it was a long time ago, from previous correspondence that I was most upset when the Beef 'n' Onion Walkers disappeared a few years ago to be replaced by Steak 'n' Onion. This was a bad time for beef flavoured crisps in general, coming hot on the heels of the loss of Beef flavoured Wotsits and Beef flavoured Squares, both mainstays of my diet back in the late 20th century. However, in the end I grew to appreciate this slightly tangy alternative.

Gone, but not forgotten.

But it seems now that Steak 'n' Onion has also disappeared quietly from our shelves. I wish you would have made an announcement about this as then I could have stocked up before it was too late. That aside though, my real "beef" is with the so called "Meaty Multipacks" that you sell.

As you may be aware if you have read my book "Fortysomething Father", available at 77p on Kindle from all good branches of Amazon and incidentally containing many of my previous letters to you, KP and Golden Wonder, basically, I love meat. And I love crisps. So the Meaty Multipack has been the perfect fit for me and I have been happily buying these for years.

But with Steak 'n' Onion seemingly having gone (Gerald is very upset again, by the way), you have seen fit to replace the flavour in the Meaty Multipacks with other flavours such as "Prawn Cocktail". This is absolutely outrageous and goodness knows what the tabloids are going to make of this when they get hold of it. I feel that with all the hoo-haa earlier this year over horse meat being passed off as beef, attempting to pass prawns off as meat is not the wisest of marketing strategies. Still I suppose it could have been worse. You could have introduced a "Horse" flavour. But the real problem is I don't like Prawn Cocktail flavour, it is not meaty enough for me.

This is most inconvenient, however, a very close friend of mine has just announced that she is to become a vegetarian but is still going to eat fish. I will therefore see if I can do a deal with her, as presumably she will no longer be able to eat Smoky Bacon or Roast Chicken flavour so will probably be keen on Prawn Cocktail. If I can persuade her to come to the supermarket with me, which is a big if, as she doesn't like them very much, we can split the bag at the checkout, she can give me one third of the money and I can give her the Prawn Cocktail bags. It is a lot of faffing about though, and doubtless will lead to more tutting in the queue behind us, but there is no other way I can see as I refuse to pay the outrageous prices shops charge for single bags.

I mentioned earlier my "new role", well I am officially Britain's VIP Sausage taster for the 2013 British Sausage awards. And I can assure you, I am not making that up, if you type "Jason Ayres Sausage Taster" in to Google you will find many links to press reports on the subject! My role is to champion all things "Sausage" and in that capacity, I today ask that you consider perhaps promoting the great British Banger with a new "Sausage" flavour crisp, to help soften the blow of the loss of Steak 'n' Onion. I can assure you that Sausage flavour crisps do work, and taste delicious. When I was growing up, Golden Wonder, Sausage and Tomato flavour was one of my favourites. I hope you don't mind me mentioning a rival brand, but having worked for 15 years in the Market Research industry before becoming a sausage taster, I know how important such feedback is.

I will even offer my services to help you promote the new flavour - you could have some blurb on the pack along the lines of "Endorsed by Jason Ayres - VIP Sausage Taster 2013, and world renowned food writer". You could even have an ad with me and Gary tucking in to some Bangers 'n' Mash. Or chips preferably, as I'm not that keen on mash.

These are exciting times in the worlds of sausages and crisps. Imagine the excitement to bring the two together!

Your faithfully

Jason Ayres
Writer of humorous parenting books, Austerity Dad and Fortysomething Father
Official Taster at the British 2013 Sausage Awards
DJ, Entertainer & the legendary Bicester Blogger

PS: I was going to email this letter to you, what with the price of stamps these days I wanted to save the money, email it, and put it towards a Smoky Bacon six pack instead. However on the website you have a 750 character limit, which is insufficient for everything I wanted to say, so it is on the way via post - I am pleased to see you have a Freepost address so it seems I shall get my Smoky Bacon crisps after all!

If you have enjoyed reading this blog, please take a look at my books on Amazon (Paperback & Kindle), where you can read lots more of the same! Click here.


  1. Quality letter. Hope they send you a nice voucher.... :-)

  2. Couldn't agree more - prawn cocktail has no place in a meaty pack!

  3. Brilliant! Totally agree about the prawn. Nat :)

  4. I have written many such letters over the years and vouchers have been frequently forthcoming. The best was £10 off Princes after I cut myself opening a tinned of Corned Beef. I neglected to mention that I was pissed at the time, having left the pub so late the kebab shop was shut and I was desperate for meat.