Salie Utz

Late last week I found a plain white envelope in my mailbox from Mark Hoyle. What kind of weird and wonderful item would I find this time?

Nothing too crazy but Mark sent me my first (and probably only*) Topps Utz card. Much to the pleasure of many of us, Topps decided to release a set of cards as a food issue. It’s not a special design like the food issues I grew up with in the late-80s, early-90s. It’s more like the Burger King and Coca Cola cards of the late-70s, early-80s which slapped a logo on the base design.

*Though Posey, Crawford, and (sort of bizarrely given how he’s been out for the season since he had Tommy John surgery almost a year ago) Cueto are also on the checklist.

And since it’s all computer-assisted design now I’m pretty sure the photo is exactly the same as the Topps flagship photo. No re-stripping or re-cropping as part of the reprinting process. Just a larger patch of white blur to allow for Salie Utz to be placed above the player name.

Still, it’s fun to be able to buy food and find cards inside. Utz exists in my neck of the woods but I haven’t noticed any that come with cards. If I came across a package that did I’d probably have to get it. Food issues are one of the things I miss most about the hobby from my youth and I’ve really enjoyed the various posts I’ve seen from other bloggers reminiscing about their childhood diets as told by food issues.

I don’t have the energy to scan all the different oddballs I collected as a kid. But looking through them all I can see that I ate a lot of Cracker Jack, Jumbo California Sunflower Seeds, Mothers Cookies, Nabisco products, and King B Beef Jerky. Chewed a lot of Bazooka. Drank a lot of Coca Cola. And went to Dennys and McDonalds a decent amount. I also managed to convince my mom to buy some Hostess, Kelloggs, and Post products and even a loaf of Wonder Bread.

As a parent I’m sad that this sense of cards being everywhere is not something my kids are growing up with. But I’m also happy that I don’t have to field requests to buy all kinds of garbage just because there are cards inside.

Anyway, very cool Mark. Thanks!

Author: Nick Vossbrink

Blogging about Photography, Museums, Printing, and Baseball Cards from both Princeton New Jersey and the San Francisco Bay Area. On Twitter as @vossbrink, WordPress at, and the web at

4 thoughts on “Salie Utz”

  1. Food issues rule. My favorites broken down by decades are: Kellogg’s (70’s), Mother’s Cookies (80’s), and Denny’s (90’s).

  2. Keep forgetting to go to the one grocery store that I know sells Utz to pick up a bag.

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