I saw a headline last week that Oreo cookies are now 110 years old. To celebrate, they have come up with another flavor of filling – confetti birthday cake. I was surprised because I figured there already WAS a birthday cake Oreo. After all in the last few years we’ve seen caramel apple, jelly donut, mint chocolate chip, pb & j, even Peeps – according to Oreo, there are actually 85 varities INCLUDING birthday cake. But apparently Confetti Birthday Cake Oreos are different than regular Birthday Cake Oreos.
Thinking about all these cookie varieties reminded me of a conference call I was on the week before on which one of my co-workers asked my boss what she takes for her headaches. Boss said Excedrin because a couple of years ago, she compared Excedrin to Migraine Excedrin and they appeared to have exactly the same amount of whatever it is that kills headaches. To avoid the marketing hoo haa, and the additional expense, she sticks to the original.
And this makes me think about the sixteen (at least) kinds of Crest toothpaste on the shelf at Target. One variety for every possible thing that could be an issue with your teeth. I’ve never compared ingredients but if I had to bet my own money, I would imagine there’s not a lot of difference.
When I was a kid, there was just one Oreo, just one Crest, just one Excedrin (actually I don’t remember Excedrin as a kid, although their website says they launched in 1960). I’m not advocating going back to a “simpler time” or anything like that, but it is a very interesting evolution of how products are now brought to market. It’s like many companies are trying to bring every niche market under their own umbrellas.
I guess I’m not even sure how I feel about this but I will say that I think 85 varieties of Oreo is rather silly, especially with 2 kinds of birthday cake cookies. You all know that I can’t stay away from Oreos with holiday colored filling (orange at Halloween, red in December, yellow in the spring) but those are the regular flavored filling. The couple of flavored Oreos that I have tried over the years didn’t appeal to me at all; I was expecting that the peanut butter one would taste really good – it didn’t. I don’t even like Double Stuff that much. So I’ll stick to my original Oreos and pass up the birthday day variety, although truth be told, I prefer Hydrox (if you could actually get them anymore).
Do you have a niche product that you like? (Alternate question: dunk or no dunk?)