The worst thing in the world is opening a bag of potato chips and finding that it’s made up of about 85% air, 14% sadness and 1% chips. However, there’s a reason behind bags of chips being packaged this way:
“Slack fill” is an intentional choice by snack makers who want to protect their delicate products from the damage of rough handling during the shipping process. When products are stacked atop one another, crammed into tight spaces, or simply jostled around in the back of a delivery truck, slack fill serves as an air cushion that prevents potato chips from becoming potato crumbs.
That’s not just any ordinary air puffing up potato chip bags, either: It’s nitrogen. Oxygen can cause the potatoes to spoil and the oil to go rancid, and the humidity found in ambient air makes the chips go soggy. Instead, packages are filled with nitrogen gas to help the snacks stay fresh..
Okay fine, maybe it serves a purpose, but I’d still rather have a full bag of crumbled chips that I can eat with a spoon rather than a bag that’s only 1/3rd of the way filled. Apparently a group of South Korean college kids felt the same way I do, and decided to make their opinion known.
A group of South Korean college students have, and to prove their point, on Sunday they used a raft made of unopened potato chip packets to traverse Seoul’s main river.
Two male students crossed the Han River on a boat made with 160 unopened bags of potato chips bound together near 0.8-mile-long Jamsil Bridge in the city’s east.
Granted, it looks like their raft is a sinking piece of potato chip shit, but any port in a storm I suppose.