Entenmann's Blamed Its Windowless Packaging Flop On Hurricane Ida

Donut lovers at home, with the smear of chocolate frosting and cookie crumbs on their faces, already know far too well what's waiting for them inside an Entenmann's box. But it's probably nice for them to see what they're buying, something customers had been able to do for around seven decades. The transparent window started in the 1950s in Long Island when Martha Entenmann, wife of the founder's son, William Jr., had the idea to put a transparent window on the box top — a change from the traditional white bakery box — to tempt customers and show off a bit. But the show was over in 2021 when the window got replaced with a photo of the box's contents.

While the devil's food crumb donuts and apple snack pies inside the boxes remained the same, passionate fans of Entenmann's slighted or possibly duped. Upset took to social media to register their complaints. A Twitter user speculated about whether the reasons for the change were environmental. Another tweeted that they felt "personally attacked." On TikTok, a user complained that they couldn't see whether moldy donuts were lurking inside the boxes. One commenter vowed never to eat the treats again while another said they had already stopped since the packaging change. But now, nearly 18 months later, Entenmann's chocolate frosted donuts and sprinkled iced brownies are once again contained in the familiar package. And according to the company, it only changed in the first place because of a natural disaster.

Entenmann's has the window to the soul, err crumb cake

Apparently, the company was not toying with people's loyalty when it made the change to its blue-bannered box. Maureen Sticco, vice president and general manager of Entenmann's parent company, Horsham, PA-based Bimbo Bakeries USA, told TODAY.com, "We made the change out of necessity in September 2021 — we experienced a material supply disruption caused by Hurricane Ida — and always planned to return to our original packaging."

In September 2021, a dam gave way in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida. The resulting flooding wreaked havoc at Entenmann's Valley Forge, PA, facility, ruining 5,000 tons of packaging in the process. The company had to act fast to avoid major delays in the delivery of its products. So it used pictures instead of the see-through window. Although the brand tried to assure fans on Facebook at the time that "it's what's on the inside that counts," many seemed too busy judging the box by its cover and threatening not to buy it.

Blame Hurricane Ida if you wish, Entenmann's. Some of your fans might be so happy to see your iconic packaging back that they don't even care about the reason.