The True Difference Between Orville Redenbacher's And Pop Secret Popcorn

Two of the best-known popcorn brands in the country are Orville Redenbacher's and Pop Secret. They make up a one-two punch of the best-selling popcorn brands in the country with Orville Redenbacher's grabbing 53 percent of the market share and Pop Secret holding on to 42 percent (via Bakery and Snacks).

While the history of popcorn in the Americas predates the arrival of the Europeans by a few thousand years, Orville Redenbacher's predates the era of microwave popcorn (via Delish). After making money in the fertilizer industry, the man for which the popcorn was named created a hybrid corn for popping that was light and fluffy. After five years of work on the project, it was introduced in 1970 and Orville Redenbacher's was an instant hit. 

The ad campaigns featuring Redenbacher, in addition to the fact that his face and tell-tale bow tie were plastered on the front of the products (via Kroger), made consumers think he was simply an actor, and people failed to realize that he was actually the brains behind the entire operation. Orville Redenbacher's brands itself as gourmet popping corn and offers buttered microwave popcorn as well as sweet and natural varieties (via Orville Redenbacher).

Pop Secret comes onto the scene

Pop Secret came onto the scene about a decade and a half after Orville Redenbacher's — General Mills introduced the brand in 1985 (via Potato Pro). However, they didn't keep ahold of it forever, as they sold the brand to Diamond Foods Inc. for $190 million in 2008 (via Star Tribune).

They market themselves as "premium popcorn" and provide a number of varieties (most of which have something to do with the word "butter") including Extra Butter, Butter Jumbo Pop, Movie Theater Butter, Movie Theater Butter Jumbo Pop, Double Butter, and Kettle Corn (via Pop Secret).

Similar to Orville Redenbacher's, they also offer popcorn kernels for popping the old fashioned way — in a pot.

The two brands have more similarities than differences. They feature both regular popcorn and popcorn that you can throw in the mic for a few minutes. They feature similar flavors. They even hold a similar percent of the market share. It seems like the difference between the two likely comes down more to personal preference than anything.