Sunday, April 13, 2008

Product freak

You all know I am "well" under 40 — at least, no where near the age when Americans stereotypically start getting crazy about having enough "free time" to write to companies and complain about products; however, if you have read C.G. long enough, you know I have written fan mail to Art's Mexican Products and lately have asked the Burt's Bees company why they are not like Neutrogena (et. al.) in offering an oil-free or at least non-comedogenic form of moisterizer. Thank the convergence of age and Internet for the following entertainment.

So, girl of mid-30s, who has been intermittently consuming junk food for well over 25 years bought some candy. Here are her insane-Sunday thoughts transmitted via e-mail to an unwitting media representative. Do you expect a reply?

Ms. B___,

It it likely you will dump this e-mail, as I am not inclined to call the 1-800# to express what other brands accept willingly via the Internet, and that is regular product feedback, which, I know, has no place in your in-box. I willingly am abusing my media privilege, and to disclose, I am related to a member of the former Purina Mills company, though both of those relationships are now moot.

I am sure your focus groups are in the majority and I in the minority, but I wanted to say that as a 34-year-old who still craves sweets, I am disappointed by the changes in the fruit flavors available in (regular) Runts. I just bought some, and I thought that all flavors might still be present. The answer is "no," and so I am disappointed.

I do not mind the inclusion of mango and pineapple, and I understand the attempt to reach the growing market with piña y mango — but I truly miss cherry and lime. They were, with orange, my favorite flavors and main reason for eating this candy. I find it odd that in a time when many candies are moving toward the sour-type, that the one that pioneered a good mix of both sour and sweet has given up such basic fruit candy flavors.

Banana was always the least-eaten in my boxes/bags when I was a child, by the way.

I suppose I could go eat a bunch of cherry Nerds, but the experience is just not the same as when chewing the satisfying full-roundedness of Runts.

I would support a "tropical" style of Runts, if only the rest of us were given a choice about being able to eat the regular "old fashioned" ones. It's bad enough that the Mars corporation abandoned lime two decades ago in Starbursts and Skittles. I think it's probably boring for kids, too, that there are two yellow flavors in one box/kind of candy, even if the pineapple color is slightly greenish. Besides, they (the pineapples) look like arachnid bodies or something less mentionable in child/polite society — not like a fruit at all!

Feel free to share this with market researchers or with fellow co-workers who might need a laugh. Sorry if tooth-rotting sugar is what gets us non-smokers through the day!

However, I remain "very much missing the cherry and lime,"

etc. et. fin.

Off to brush my teeth. At least Bottle Caps are unadulterated, if only one can find them!*

(*CVS carries them, yes, I know. Artist Laura Beamer will also send you some in her PR if you are on her list.)

1 comment:

Applecart T. said...

Even though I was not thinking clearly (Skittles DO have lime, duh!), they wrote me back and said thanks and want to send me a free-candy-eating coupon.

Burt's Bees also said, "yes, we've logged your comment" and someone in product development will think about it.

Should I write to Pringles and thank them for the mini versions? They are thicker but have more salt per mouth inch!