Taco Bell Interns Say Chain 'Stole' Doritos Tacos Idea -- Talk About Loco!

Four former college students who interned for Taco Bell's ad agency in the 1990s are pretty peeved these days. They claim the fast food chain restaurant didn't come up with the brilliant idea to fuse delicious Doritos with delicious taco shells -- they did. They say they entered a competition at the agency in 1995 and pitched the idea to create a taco shell made from Doritos chips. Their suggestions included naming it "Doritos Tacos" -- so much for originality -- charging 79 cents per taco, and hiring former Friends star Matthew Perry to star in advertisements. One intern even says the two flavors they pitched -- Nacho Cheese and Cool Ranch -- were the exact flavors Taco Bell ended up using.

Um, 17 years later, that is.

It seems the world just wasn't ready for such explosive flavors back in the '90s. Taco Bell waited nearly two decades to introduce its Doritos awesomeness -- but that fact hasn't kept the interns from insisting they deserve some credit.


The weird thing here is that the ex-interns aren't the only ones trying to claim responsibility for the food "invention." A man who died in 2013 wrote in his obituary that he pitched the idea to Frito Lay. And a former prison inmate is suing because he claims he mailed the idea to Taco Bell and that someone stole his letter.

Totally bananas.

I have to agree with a Taco Bell rep, who says having an idea and actually doing the legwork to turn it into a reality are two very separate things. While I have to admit the thought of Doritos filled with seasoned beef and all the taco fixings seems like something that customers would clamor for, I'm sure Taco Bell had its reasons for waiting to introduce the product. Something that wasn't all that "marketable" (one intern says this was Taco Bell's response at the time) can suddenly become very marketable -- even if it's 17 years after the idea was proposed.

As for the interns -- sorry, guys, but the ship has sailed and you missed boarding it at the right time. It happens. If it's any consolation, I've been pitching peanut butter Pop-Tarts for years and they just came out. So unfair.

Have you ever tried a Doritos Locos Taco? Do you think these interns deserve credit for pitching the idea?


Image via tacobell.com

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