EDITORIAL: Tupperware deep-frozen in time
The company’s demise is the fall of yet another standard-bearer of big-label US capitalism
Tupperware, the US company whose product became a byword for exuberant American consumer culture in the 1950s, has warned it could go under unless it raises fresh capital.
Airtight and waterproof, but apparently not history-resistant too, Tupperware’s demise is the fall of yet another standard-bearer of big-label US capitalism, from a long-gone era when the likes of Ford, GM and General Electric ruled.
Developed from a waste product, the Tupperware innovation was US inventor Earl Tupper’s, and it was so novel at the time that it became the name for all airtight containers in perpetuity.
With the novelty factor long gone, who but the most fastidious of consumers bothers now whether their container has a brand name?
Apart from the proliferation of substitutes, young people especially don’t see the point of bespoke plasticware, or any plastic at all. Not to mention the parties from which most of these lurid containers emanated.
Take heart, Tupperware loyalists. Like all plastics, it takes about 500 years to even start disintegrating.
But unless funders step up, that could be the end. Dump the shares, by all means, but otherwise hang on to your Tupperware in a world of furious change.
Its usefulness is the stuff of legend. It may even become a store of value in time.
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