On March 25, the Belgium Post Office (Bpost) will issue novel chocolate smelling, chocolate tasting stamps. There will be five stamps treated with heat sensitive inks.
The Belgian postal service said: “We have added a chocolate taste to the glue of the stamps. You can taste [it] when you lick it. It was not easy to get the scent and flavor of the dark chocolate right. In the end, people from Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland all worked on it.”
The stamps are being issued to honor and celebrate the country's famous chocolatiers and chocolate as a national delicacy. A Telegraph article describes the issue as Willy Wonka-style postage stamps that are in the wacky spirit of the novel by Road Dahl about an eccentric candy maker.
If you sniff the stamps you will smell chocolate and when you lick them to stick them on the envelope they will taste of chocolate. Perhaps people will lick off all the glue and then need to look for a glue stick. Johnny Thijs, the CEO of Bpost crowed: "With such stamps we prove our sense of modernity and innovation."
Not content with their chocolate stamps, Bpost is also planning a series of stamps that will emphasize road safety. These stamps will be printed on "glow in the dark ink". Perhaps people will be encouraged to stick these on their clothing at night, or on backpacks. Another future issue to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Belgium's Royal Meteorological Society will have heat sensitive ink that will reveal a hidden pattern when touched because of the warmth from the fingers.
Not all philatelists were impressed by the new stamps. Bujustsu a contributor to a stamp community website posted: "The Bpost CEO states that they are staying abreast of the latest technologies. That may be so, but, it is still another 'gimmick' product that seems to be produced more and more by the post office entities of today,I'm just glad that they aren't issuing stamps promoting wildlife and showing a skunk." Bujustsu certainly has a point. Post offices around the world are searching for new ways to increase revenue.
The five stamps are intended for overseas mail and will cost 6.20 euros when they go on sale on March 25. I hope they have a best before date on the back.