Tidbits: More enhancements to bottled water
- Article by: Al Sicherman
- Star Tribune
- January 16, 2013 - 4:52 PM
Mr. Tidbit has avoided dealing with the very multiple brands of bottled water, as he can’t begin to tell them apart. (Twenty years ago, Al Urbanski, then editor of the trade publication Food and Beverage Marketing, called bottled water “the Pet Rock that lived.”) Mr. Tidbit hasn’t had much to say, either, about the various powdered and crystalline products sold as flavoring for bottled water. And he has mentioned Mio, Kraft’s liquid “water enhancer,” only once — when it showed up two years ago.
But now Coke has entered the picture, matching its Dasani brand water with Dasani Drops “flavor enhancer.” Both Mio and Dasani Drops are artificially sweetened, and both use the same pair of sweeteners: sucralose and acesulfame potassium.
While Mr. Tidbit has seen Mio at prices ranging from $3.99 to $4.49 per 1.62–ounce bottle, $3.99 seems to be the standard price for Dasani Drops, which come in a slightly larger 1.90-ounce bottle, so Mio costs from 17 percent to 32 percent more per ounce. Further, a “serving” of Mio is ½ teaspoon, so there are 24 in a bottle, while a “serving” of Dasani Drops is only ⅓ teaspoon, so a bottle contains 32.
Is there as much flavor enhancement in ⅓ teaspoon of Dasani Drops as there is water enhancement in ½ teaspoon of Mio? Frankly, Mr. Tidbit didn’t feel like spending eight bucks to find out.
When he mentioned Kellogg’s new Frosted Mini Wheats Crunch last week, Mr. Tidbit probably should have mentioned Kellogg’s other three new cereal varieties. They are Cinnamon Jacks, Chocolatey Strawberry Special K and Scooby-Doo (vanilla-flavored pieces shaped like bones).
And as long as he’s mentioning the new Kellogg’s products, he should give an equal wave to General Mills’ two recent additions: Peanut Butter Toast Crunch and Honey Nut Cheerios Medley Crunch. (That last one is “a mix of Honey Nut Os, crunchy clusters and crispy wheat flakes.”)
Kraft’s Oscar Mayer brand has added four-ounce bags of Turkey Bacon Bits to its line of three-ounce bags of Real Bacon Bits; both are about the same price.
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