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article imageCaffeine-enriched chewing gum to stay awake without coffee?

By Milton Este     Mar 11, 2013 in Food
Stuck in a very important meeting and can't keep awake? Frequent trips to the washroom is a no-no so looks like coffee is out. Luckily for all those that need an energy boost, Wrigley's has the solution.
When you think of Wrigely's, what do you think of? Chances are it's chewing gum. One of the biggest innovators of chewing gums and their flavors is bringing another product to its table and hopefully to the market targeting 25 years and older adults.
Euromonitor International, a global market research firm, reports the rise in the popularity of energy drinks with sales climbing 41% since 2008 while the chewing gum sales slumped 3.8% in the same period.
Wrigley's hopes to regain sales slumps by introducing caffeine enriched chewing gum - Alert Energy Caffeine Gum, to give leading energy drink companies a run for their money. Apparently, Wrigley's is aware of the criticisms associated with the high caffeine dosages currently in existing energy drinks such as 5 Hour Energy, Monster Energy, Full Throttle, and Rockstar.
The current projected caffeine dosage for one piece of chewing gum is approximately 40mg or about half a cup of coffee. This is a trade off between the safety dosage and the reaction of its consumption. While trying to compete, Wrigley's is taking all the necessary precautions to avoid caffeine overdose incidents surrounding the energy drink industry. Other precautions taken include warning labels of caffeine dosage and revamped packaging to differentiate the Alert Energy Caffeine Gum with their usual fun and family friendly product lines.
As for the pricing, it's projected at $2.99, which is pricier than most gums, but cheaper than a cup of Starbucks coffee and definitely cheaper than any energy drink. Also according to CNN, Wrigley's spokeswoman Jennifer Luth said everything about the gum, from its price to its more bitter taste, is likely to make it unattractive to children or teen consumers. The company is also urging retailers to display it with energy drinks, not gum.
As for the health concerns, each gum piece has significantly less caffeine than a cup of coffee and even less than any energy drink out on the market. 5 Hour Energy tops the chart with 208 mg of caffeine in 1.9 fl.oz, which is approved by the FDA. More information on caffeine dosages can be found on EnergyFiend and the Center for Science in the Public Interest.
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