4808 NW Fruit Valley Road
Vancouver, WA 98660
How do Ruffles get their ridges? How do Fritos get that curled up shape? For the answers to these and other pressing questions, take your family to the Frito-Lay factory tour in Vancouver, Washington. Here you'll have a chance to see how Fritos, Doritos, Tostitos, Cheetos, Ruffles, and Lays brand potato chips are made. You'll even have a chance to sample some freshly-made products during the tour.
First you'll enter the corn chip kitchen area. You and your family can watch as corn is ground between milling stones to form "masa", a golden corn dough. An extruder turns the masa into long ribbons, and then whirling knife blades cut the dough into small individual Fritos. The Fritos then fall into a vat of oils, where the curl as they cook. In the case of Doritos and Tostitos, you'll see masa pressed onto sheets, rolled, cut into triangles or circles, baked and seasoned.
Next, you'll watch as potato chips are produced. As for the difference between Lays brand and Ruffles, it's all in the shape of the cutting blades. In the cheese-flavored snacks area, you'll learn how Cheetos get their characteristic "puffed" shape.
Open: Tours are offered on Wednesdays at 9:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m., and 11:30 a.m. The plant is closed on holidays.
Age Limitations: Must be 5 years old to take the tour.
Reservations: Reservations are required. Individuals and families will be asked to join a scheduled group tour.