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January 1, Pop Tart Inventor Bill Post Dies at 96, Legacy Lives On



The inventor of the beloved Pop Tart, William “Bill” Post, passed away on Saturday at the age of 96, as confirmed by a Michigan funeral home to PEOPLE. Post’s journey in the food industry began at the tender age of 16 in Grand Rapids, where he worked washing trucks at Hekman Business Company, which later evolved into the popular snack brand Keebler.

After serving in the U.S. Army Air Corps in Japan, Post returned to Hekman and climbed the ranks within the company, according to his obituary. MKD Funeral Home reports that Post later “welcomed some executives from Kellogg’s who asked if he thought it would be possible for Keebler to create a new product they had in mind.” This meeting led to the creation of the Pop Tart, a feat often attributed to Post, but he always shared the credit with his team.

“I assembled an amazing team that developed Kellogg’s concept of a shelf-stable toaster pastry into a fine product that we could bring to market in the span of just four months,” he would say. Pop Tarts first appeared on store shelves in 1964, featuring the four original flavors: strawberry, blueberry, brown sugar cinnamon, and apple-currant. Six decades later, the market now offers dozens of flavors, with new ones constantly being introduced.

The partnership between Kellogg’s and Keebler continued until Kellogg’s acquired Keebler in 2001. “In spite of an extraordinary life and legendary accomplishments, Bill remained a humble man of God with a servant’s heart that seemed to overflow with generosity,” his obituary stated. Post served his communities as a board member for schools, churches, the YMCA, and was a member of Gideons International for 60 years.

Retiring at age 56, Post’s retirement was short-lived as he answered a request from Kellogg’s to return as a traveling consultant, a role he held for the next 20 years. This position included “worldwide travel and the forging of international friendships,” according to his obituary. Post and his wife, Florence, were married for an astounding 72 years before her passing in 2020.

He is survived by his two children, Dan and Rachel, seven grandchildren, and 10 great-grandchildren. The story of Post’s invention will be portrayed in the upcoming Netflix comedy movie Unfrosted: The Pop-Tart Story, starring Jerry Seinfeld, set to be released on May 3, as reported by PEOPLE.

Why It Matters (op-ed)

William “Bill” Post’s passing is a reminder of how American innovation and determination can lead to great success. The Pop Tart, an iconic snack, was born out of hard work and collaboration between an eager entrepreneur and a major corporation.

Post’s story is a testament to the power of the free market and the importance of supporting small businesses, as they are often the birthplace of ideas that can change the world. His legacy will live on through the upcoming Netflix film, which should hopefully inspire future generations to pursue their dreams and contribute to the ongoing greatness of our nation.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Don

    February 16, 2024 at 7:08 pm

    May Mr. Post rest in peace with the Lord, Condolences to his family & friends. His wonderful treat will live on & be enjoyed for decades to come.

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