LOS ANGELES—Saying that its characteristic markings had likely evolved as a defense mechanism, experts at UCLA confirmed Monday that the Doritos bag developed its bright, distinctive coloring as an evolutionary tactic to warn would-be predators that it could kill them if consumed. “After extensive research, we can conclude with a high degree of certainty that the reds, blacks, and oranges of the Doritos bag emerged over a series of generations to let anyone who would eat it know that it contains toxic chemicals that could kill them or at least cause them serious digestive pain,” said lead researcher Deborah McGill as she showed reporters slides of the more muted brown-and-yellow coloration of the precursors to today’s bags. “We believe this coloration scheme—which is shared by most members of the Frito-Lay genus, including the Cheetos bag and Funyun bag—is used to signal ‘stay away’ in its natural environment of 7-Eleven stores and house parties. When combined with its other chief defense mechanism, the sharp, pointed chip, this makes this nacho cheese chip container a formidable foe.” McGill added that their research also suggested that the Garden Veggie Chips bag had evolved to mimic the Doritos’ bag coloring despite not containing any of the same poisons.

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