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Crayola Replaces Food-Scented Crayons to Protect Hungry Colorers

November 14, 1995

EASTON, Pa. (AP) _ Crayola has created a new batch of scented crayons to replace the mouthwatering food-flavors many parents feared their children were more likely to eat than use for coloring.

Gone are favorites such as coconut, licorice, chocolate, cherry and blueberry. The new scents, which children will recognize but not hunger for, include baby powder, leather jacket, dirt, cedar chest and new car smell.

Easton-based Binney & Smith Inc., which makes Crayola, planned to announce the new scents today.

Parents have been calling Binney & Smith, worried that children would eat the sepia-colored, chocolate-scented crayon for breakfast with a glass of milk, or try to blow bubbles with the pink, gum-scented one.

Since the Magic Scents were released in July 1994, the company has received fewer than 10 reports of children ingesting the non-toxic crayons, but it felt compelled to retire the food scents.

``We’re changing because consumers really believed food scents weren’t a good idea even though our research showed they were as safe as any other Crayola product,″ company spokeswoman Sandy Horner said.

From their introduction to the fall of this year, 3 million boxes of food-scented crayons were sold.

``They were very popular,″ Horner said. ``People really liked the idea, and we wanted to make a good product better.″

The company tried to pick new scents young children would be familiar with and some odors didn’t make the cut, including alfalfa, rubber tire and rainbow.

``I’m not sure what color that would be, and what does a rainbow smell like?″ Horner said.

After more than 90 years with no changes to crayons except for new colors, the food scents were the first innovation.

Crayola now produces glow-in-the-dark crayons and crayons that can change color.

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