Yes, this is another rant post. Perhaps I need to go back to COVID lockdown mode and avoid the world, as my irritation meter seems permanently stuck on a high setting.
Okay, Carmel Cold-Brew M&M’s…
I truly wish this were a photoshopped image above. Or better yet, an image that I had never seen. However, to my chagrin, this was taken in the checkout aisle of my local Menard’s home improvement store. I won’t even get started on how much I despise Menard’s, and my dissatisfaction with this candy is only further enhanced by the act of waiting along with the rest of the sheep to purchase some crap to improve or create more ease in my already well-to-do home.
Side note – I do often feel I have Marxist tendencies (note to self to explore this).
But back to the point. Innovation, as defined by Merriam-Webster (I’m old school and prefer this to Wikipedia), is:
- a new idea, method, or device
- the introduction of something new
After reading these definitions, I considered changing the title of this post, but obviously did not. Because while this may be the “textbook” definition, I believe there is also an accepted connotation of ‘improvement’ or ‘betterment’ associated with innovation. Innovation seems to be praised and rewarded for its bettering of something in some way. A quick Google search confirms several “innovation awards” as supporting evidence for my claim. (And I actually wrote the post before having the thought to actually check the definition so here we are).
On with the gripe. Put simply, why the heck do we need to innovate M&M’s?
Even if there is no ‘betterment’ claim, just the fact of introducing this new thing is bothersome to me. I have no idea how much effort (read: time & money) goes into something like this; idea creation, product development, testing, large-scale production, marketing. All in all, it’s probably not insignificant – surely enough to feed those in need for a month.
And I have to ask the obvious question: Was there something wrong with original M&M’s such that a trendy flavoring alternative was warranted?
I mean we already have Peanut M&Ms. Were customers clamoring for not only more sweetness in the form of caramel, but also some balancing bitterness of coffee flavoring; and specifically a ‘cold-coffee’ flavoring? And how is that even possible? These M&M’s were not refrigerated when I came across them. What makes them decidedly ‘cold-brew’ vs. ‘brew’ flavored?
I’m well aware this all may come off as curmudgeonly. Why do I care? Why must I criticize such an innocuous new product?? What difference does it make???
I’ll avoid the health soapbox and choose instead to step up on the “save society in general” box. Pick any of the plethora of potentially calamitous issues facing society and argue innovating M&M’s is important. Mars, as a company, is not about saving the oceans or getting us, as a species, to be non-reliant on Earth. I get it.
In what way do these now differently flavored candies contribute positively to the world?
Perhaps they bring joy to the people who eat them. Significantly more than regular M&M’s? Enough to warrant the effort that went into their creation? And is that joy (if there is one) well-founded? Might M&M’s contribute to ‘better’ joy by including poetry in their packaging (i.e. Chocolove)? And if it’s really just the misguided desire for choice, WE HAVE PEANUT M&Ms ALREADY!
I think it’s not only about doing things to contribute positively to society but also not doing things that needlessly exacerbate its downfall. It’s a matter of perspective. And maybe my bigger gripe is with the priorities and where importance is placed (or misplaced). I mean Mars is a company with the objective of making ever-more profits.
But it’s about perspective. When viewed against things that actually matter, the nuanced flavor of my M&M’s really doesn’t matter – so don’t try and sell me that it does.
But alas, if we just decide to give zero fucks and consume these treats, at least we also now have something complimentary with which to wash them down: Click Here Now