Tupperware only sold at parties? David Feldman's...

WHY IS

November 23, 1992

WHY IS Tupperware only sold at parties? David Feldman's "Why Do Fish Sleep? and Other Imponderables of Everyday Life," explains part of this mystery.

It all began in 1945, when Earl Tupper established Tupper Plastics. His first effort to market the product in stores failed because people were afraid that plastic would be too flimsy. Tupper was then approached by two demonstrators of Stanley Home Products, who convinced him they could sell his goods. Their work eventually led to the establishment of Tupperware Home parties in 1951.

Today, Tupperware still believes the party plan sells more and has better advantages than regular retail sale. The company experiences fewer problems with sales through its party plan than do Avon or Fuller Brush and has more than 325,000 dealers in 42 countries.

Yet there seems something elitist to that theory. How does one become a Tupperware person anyway? Is there some sort of intense training and interrogation period leading up to it?

Can just anyone walk into a Tupperware party?

Can someone with a criminal record hold a Tupperware party?

There are personal questions as well. Will we raise our children with Tupperware, or will we consider using store-bought, proletariat containers? A serious issue, indeed.

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