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Procter & Gamble pitches new chocolate-flavored Crest

4:33 PM, Jan 27, 2014   |    comments
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CINCINNATI - A new line of toothpastes with bold flavors is on its way to supermarket shelves from Procter & Gamble Co.

The Cincinnati-based consumer products giant is unveiling Crest Be in flavors such as mint chocolate trek, lime spearmint zest and vanilla mint spark.

Don't feel guilty -- your dentist will still approve. Procter & Gamble executives stress that Be offers the "foundational benefits needed for oral health including cavity protection, cleaning, fresh breath and whitening."

"You should see it in stores first week of February," said Procter & Gamble spokeswoman Michelle Lohman. The line will also roll out in Canada shortly after the U.S. launch next month.

The new flavors are a departure from the standby mint and cinnamon varieties that pepper Crest's offerings.

Procter & Gamble's Crest is the No. 2 oral care brand in the world with 20% market share behind Colgate. Crest commands about $2.3 billion in worldwide sales, according to industry tracker Euromonitor International.

The latest offering is aimed at injecting excitement into brushing, with Procter & Gamble marketing the new flavors via social media.

Chief Financial Officer Jon Moeller mentioned the Be line in last week's quarterly earnings report as an effort to attract new adventurous, "experiential consumers."

Karen Machleit, head of the marketing department at the University of Cincinnati, said Procter & Gamble is trying to appeal to brand-switchers who are always looking for something new.

"It's a way of reinvigorating interest in a brand," she said. "By having a variety of products, they keep consumers from switching."

P&G said it developed the line after research showed some consumers wanted more products that allow for self-expression and seek out unexpected flavors.

"Daredevils, have we got a surprise for you," Crest says on the Be website. "It's a whole new world of deliciousness for toothbrushes everywhere. And it's ready to take your mouth on an exhilarating ride. Better buckle up."

(Copyright © 2014 USA TODAY)

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