Tupperware plastic containers -- and their famous "burping" lids -- revolutionized the post-World War II kitchen, keeping leftover food fresher longer and providing housewives with a new potential source of income: Tupperware parties. Take the lid off your Tupperware smarts and test your knowledge on the kitchenware company's history.
An inventor since adolescence, Tupper filed his most famous patent on June 2, 1947 for the “E.S. Tupper Open Mouth Container and Nonsnap type of Closure Therefor.”
In 1951, Earl Tupper decided to do away with in-store Tupperware sales and redirected the business model to only direct sales, via Tupperware parties.
In 1954, having made Tupperware a leading household brand under her guidance, Brownie Wise became Businessweek magazine’s first cover woman.
Brownie Wise encouraged Tupperware salespeople to demonstrate how to "burp" the containers. That burping sound signaled that Tupperware's signature vacuum seal -- which kept food fresher longer -- was in effect.
Featuring 14 products, including tumblers, nesting bowls and their famous burping lids, Tupper's original Millionaire Line came in frosty white crystal and five pastel tones.
Before the brand became a household name in the 1960s, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York had already included Tupperware as part of a futuristic kitchenware design exhibit.
In 1958, after firing his vice president of Tupperware Parties, Brownie Wise, Tupper sold his plastics company for $16 million and moved to Costa Rica.
After a slump in sales, Tupperware branched out beyond its Tupperware parties-only direct sales approach and began offering catalogue sales in 1988.
The annual Tupperware Jubilee sales celebrations at the company headquarters help incentivize direct sales and build brand loyalty among employees.
Tupperware's signature sealing lids eliminated the need to cover leftovers with shower caps.
Tupper named the plastic itself "Poly-T: Material of the Future" and coined "Tupperware" as the name of his product line of containers.
The original "Millionaire Line" of Tupperware came in crystal, as well as five pastel shades of yellow, blue, green, orange and pink.
After parting ways with Tupperware in 1958, Brownie Wise joined Cinderella cosmetics to enliven its direct sales, but she wasn't able to put her magic Tupperware touch on the product line.
Vintage Tupperware probably won't make anyone rich. According to Country Living magazine, a set of original Tupperware in good condition is valued around $45.
In 1928, Earl Tupper went into the landscaping business with Tupper Tree Doctors. Ten years later, he started up the Earl S. Tupper Company that led him to Tupperware.
Believe it or not, Tupperware is so popular worldwide that a handful of new parties start every 3 seconds. In the time it took you to read and answer this question, several parties got underway.