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Rival snack brand trolls PepsiCo with ‘Better Snacks,’ a DTC website to counter Frito-Lay

The battle to satisfy your munchies is turning into an all-out clone war.   

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One week after PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay unit jumped into the e-commerce fray with a website called Snacks.com, an upstart snack rival called PeaTos is launching its own direct-to-consumer effort. Can you even guess what it’s called?

That’s right: BetterSnacks.com.

The new website, set to launch on Tuesday, lets hungry consumers buy the brand’s full line of alternative crunchy snacks, which are made from peas instead of corn.

The move comes as millions of Americans are entering their third month on lockdown due to the coronavirus crisis. PepsiCo, which already reported an earnings bump after consumers stockpiled snacks and beverages in anticipation of being stuck at home, is seeking to further capitalize on our situational sedentariness with new DTC offerings. In addition to Snacks.com, it also launched PantryShop.com, which offers meal kit-style product combinations.

Founded in 2018, PeaTos has been trying extra hard to be a thorn in the side of its multinational competitor, positioning itself as a healthy David going up against a junk food Goliath. Its name is a riff on Cheetos, the staple snack food known for the orange residue it leaves on people’s fingers. PepsiCo reportedly sent PeaTos a cease-and-desist letter about the name two years ago.

“Now, as the world battles an unprecedented pandemic that is keeping people at home, the fight for snack share just headed online,” said PeaTos CEO Nick Desai in a statement.

Curious? Head to the website and give peas a chance.

PeaTos is part of a new wave of brands and products that use pea protein as a way of appealing to the health-conscious sensibilities of younger buyers. The most famous of these, Beyond Meat, went public last year in one of the most successful IPOs of 2019.

We reached out to PepsiCo for comment and will update if we hear back.

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