Wrigley caffeine gum will appear on the shelves of convenience stores and supermarkets starting in April.
Wrigley, a subsidiary of Mars, Inc., is trying to “wake up” the declining sales of chewing gum with its new caffeine-laced product called Alert Energy Caffeine Gum as well as capitalize on the popularity of energy drinks.
The caffeine gum is reportedly being marketed to those consumers over 25 who have fallen out of the chewing gum habit and will contain a warning label indicating it is not recommended for children. The Wrigley caffeine gum also will have a bitter taste, which is apparently supposed to discourage teens or young children from buying it in the first place.
Each package of sugar-free Alert Energy Caffeine Gum will cost about $3.00 for eight pellets, each one of which contains about 40 milligrams of caffeine, equivalent to a half cup of coffee or a 16-ounce soda. It will come in either fruit or mint flavors.
A Wrigley’s official claimed that parents don’t have to worry about their kids bouncing off the walls from a dose of caffeine in its new gum; it won’t appeal to them since it tastes completely different than traditional chewing gum:
“The taste expectations are different for someone who wants to chew gum for energy than for someone who chews gum for flavor. If you come at this as a piece of gum that you chew for enjoyment it’s not going to deliver on that. What we found from energy [drink] consumers is that they’re used to this taste. It’s symbolic of efficacy.”
Energy drinks of late have sparked controversy and lawsuits over alleged health risks from caffeine overload. According to Wrigley’s market research of energy drink fans, “consumers … want more portability as well as more control over how much caffeine they consume in one sitting. People who want a little boost can chew one pellet while people who want more can chew more.” Other caffeinated gums have hit the market with mixed results.
Would you consider buying Wrigley caffeine gum for an afternoon boost or is our society already over-caffeinated? Are you concerned about children getting their hands on the new caffeinated chewing gum?
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