There’s money in Menthol

menthol-bold-crystal

Menthol is the most important flavoring chemical. Without menthol it would be difficult to get that cool clean feeling when we brush our teeth or chew gum. Cough syrups and drops wouldn't cool the throat and open nasal passages. In 2007, it was estimated that production of menthol was in excess of 19,000 metric tons.  Because of it's importance, there is a huge demand for this flavor chemical. It is a natural material and therefore subject to price fluctuations as a result of envrionmental conditions. Naturally, peppermint oil (Mentha piperita) contains approximately 35-45% menthol and corn mint oil (Mentha arvensis) contains 65-75% menthol. Mentha arvensis is largely grown in India and used to produce menthol. Because menthol is a … [Read more...]

Methyl salicylate, Artificial Wintergreen oil (FEMA 2745)

methyl salicylate

A standard lab experiment in organic chemistry is to convert aspirin(acetylsalicylic acid) to Methyl salicylate. Methyl salicylate is an ester which smells sweet, is strong, is approved for use in food and is the characterizing flavor of wintergreen. Wintergreen flavor is very popular in the United States. Countries like Japan and Italy think it's most suitable for cleaning bathrooms, but not for eating. Personally, Wintergreen is one of my favorite flavors. It not only adds cool minty flavor, it adds sweetness. You can taste wintergreen in toothpastes, candies, gums, rootbeer, and bubble gum. Yes, that's right, root beer.  Try a swig of rootbeer;  doesn't it taste a little like wintergreen?  Rootbeer also has vanilla, ginger, cinnamon, … [Read more...]

Stride Shaun White mintacular artificially flavored sugar free chewing gum

Shaun White Mintacular

Shaun White is spectacular, but the chewing gum mintacular is not. It warms anyone's heart to hear the story of  Shaun White overcoming a heart defect and eventually become an Olympic athlete. Mintacular, however,  is just ANOTHER spearmint and melon artificially flavored chewing gum. The flavor reminds me of  a cleaning compound or a shampoo, it is very cosmetic. The aqua color seems a bit cosmetic as well. A current trend is spearmint gum is to combine it with an artificial melon flavor.  Spearmint gums from  Stride, Trident and Mentos all have this flavor blend.  Wrigley 5 Rain and Ice Breaker Ice Cube spearmint gums have an authentic spearmint flavor.  Spearmint and melon flavored gums on the market are reliant on synthetic l-Carvone … [Read more...]

Colgate Total Advanced fresh+whitening fresh gel, flavor review

Colgate Advanced Fresh + Whitening Gel

An interesting fact about toothpaste is that it's considered a cosmetic product by the FDA. Toothpaste is something we place in our mouth and possibly ingest, but one of it's primary purposes is to freshen breath (cosmetic). Toothpaste without flavor is terrible. I know, I've tried it. It's very soapy and bitter. Usually toothpaste manufacturers add at least 1% flavor (mint oil) to toothpaste for the desired affect. In 2004, I moved to Washington state to work with mint oil. One of the major growing regions for mint in the United States is the Northwest. Approximately 3 million pounds of Peppermint oil are produced annually in the world, with the majority of that oil coming from the United States. The Mint Industry Research Council … [Read more...]

Crest 3D White Vivid, Radiant Mint Review

Crest 3D White Vivid, Radiant Mint

Proctor & Gambles's Crest 3D White line was the most heralded new product in oral care in 2010. I  found this data in the Jan/Feb 2012 Global Cosmetic Industry Magazine (www.GCImagazine.com). The reason for its success in the United States is attributed to the fact that it's a part of a  full care oral care regimen. This regimen consists of a toothbrush, an alcohol free whitening mouth rinse ,whitening strips and paste-gel hybrid toothpaste. Per the box; 3D White Vivid toothpaste provides radiant whitening: patented micro-cleansing whiteners to life and polish away surface stains gentle foaming action to clean hard to reach places with regular brushing fights cavities, refreshes mouth and removes plaque use with the Oral B 3D … [Read more...]

Project 7 sugar free Fresh mint gum, flavor review

Project 7  Fresh Mint Gum

I'm a sucker for helping others on a global scale. Usually, I consider help writing checks to reputable organizations. Do I think buying gum will help the world?  Not really. Especially this gum. There is nothing unique about Project 7 gum and it tastes bad, like it's been a hot car all summer.  Will Project 7's goal of one million new fruit tree plantings in Guatemala, El Salvador and Nicaragua change much?  Maybe...I'm not certain.  I'd rather write a check, though, than chew this gum. When I first pop this natural & artificially flavored, artificially colored and synthetically sweetened gum in my mouth; my impression is pinesol and dirt! I imagine the mint oils sourced for this gum are from foreign countries and unprocessed. Very … [Read more...]

Clif Bar Energy bar, Peppermint Stick review

Clif Bar, Peppermint Stick flavor

Happy New Year! It's the 2nd of January and if you're like me, you've spent the day cleaning up after the holidays. New Years signifies that it's time to pack away the decorations and  finish all the holiday treats; including the Peppermint Stick Clif Bar I bought at REI for $1.45 four weeks ago. In an earlier life I was an energy bar addict:  I lived at the beach, ran a marathon and played beach volleyball. Energy and protein bars are a convenient, nutritious snack for someone always "on the go" and exercising. Clif bars were my usual morning breakfasts and before workout snack. Currently, my beach volleyball days are on hold; while I live in the Northwest, concentrate on raising a family and taking care of a house. Raking leaves and … [Read more...]

Silk all natural soymilk, Mint Chocolate review

Silk all natural soymilk, mint chocolate

I'm a fan of Silk soymilk products. Silk's soymilk vanilla creamer is delicious and amazing in coffee.  Silk soymilk mint chocolate sounded like something my girls might like (since they love Westsoy's mint chocolate soymilk); so I gave it a try. I did not look at the ingredients or label closely and later realized that it was sweetened with Stevia. Stevia tends to be bitter and have a lingering aftertaste. I was hopeful that this product would taste good, since it was the Silk brand and it contained evaporated cane juice as well as Stevia.  Silk soymilk mint chocolate is pretty good as a cold beverage: creamy, sweet, nice mint flavor, low soy notes; but it is lacking in fullness & chocolate flavor. Unfortunately, my daughters don't … [Read more...]

Candy Cane Tootsie Pop Drops, Peppermint Flavor review

Candy Can Tootsie Pop Drops Peppermint Flavor

There is absolutely no way a person can run into Target for one thing and hurry back out. Target has made their store too enjoyable. Even if you don't end up buying anything, it seems you always can spend half an hour looking. The biggest distraction at their store is their seasonal department. I can always count on Target to stock all the new & interesting items at a good price. Last week, I had to stop by Target for some cleaning spray and craft supplies and ended up spending 20 minutes in the seasonal department choosing new candies to taste. Candy Cane Tootsie Pop Drops, Peppermint flavor, caught my eye immediately. I had to try them. Whoops, wait a minute, there is also Peppermint Tootsie Pop lollipops. Since I'm an adult, I'll … [Read more...]

UP2U Mentos Gum MandarinStrawbery/Spearmint Review

UP2U Mandarin Strawberry Spearmint

This is the 2nd gum flavor pack from UP2U I am reviewing. As previously stated, I love the marketing of this new Mentos gum and find it new, fun & exciting. I wish I could say the same about mandarin strawberry flavor. It's an interesting concept for a gum flavor and seems better suited for an adult beverage. Strawberry lemonade is more mainstream and would most likely taste better. My biggest complaint about the strawberry mandarin flavor is the floral flavor, it made the gum perfumey. There were some green strawberry notes, woody mandarin character and orange follow through, but in general the floral note made it unappealing. The coolness level and lingering sensation was perfect.  At 5-6 minutes into the chew my mouth was … [Read more...]