Hershey Unveils New Chocolate Bar
HERSHEY, Pa. (AP) _ Hershey Chocolate Co. officials said Wednesday a new chocolate bar, Bar None, is being distributed nationally after successful test-marketing in California.
President Joseph P. Viviano said the new product features a cocoa wafer, chocolate creme, peanuts and a milk chocolate coating. It is the first new product Hershey developed for national distribution since it marketed the Skor bar in 1983.
Tony Pingitore, the director of new development, said Bar None was created primarily for adults who are passionate about chocolate.
″We saw in the ’80s ... that the interest in chocolate has exploded,″ Pingitore said at a news conference. ″There was interest in a real special treat, in something different.″
He said product development and test-marketing spanned three years and included several changes in the formula. Pingitore said the company spends anywhere from $500,000 to $15 million on testing and development before introducing products on a national scale, but he declined to say how much was spent on Bar None.
Pingitore acknowledged that since chocolate consumption leveled off last year after several years of growth, the success of Bar None ″is going to be at the expense of other brands,″ including some of the 15 types of candy bars Hershey makes.
Distribution of the chocolate bar will begin immediately, followed by a national television, radio and newspaper advertising campaign in mid-October. The theme of the ad campaign is ″Bar None. It’ll tame the chocolate beasty in you.″
While Bar None, which will be made at the company’s plant in Stuarts Draft, Va., had a successful test-marketing, Pingitore said another product is not doing as well as expected in testing in the Midwest.
″We’re still looking for successful signs,″ he said about Grand Slam, a bar made of chocolate, nuts, caramel and crisp rice.
He said the extensive regional testing of Bar None, Grand Slam and other new products would save the company money in the long run.
″Most new food products fail,″ Pingitore said. ″Our goal is to minimize the risk of failure by doing our homework up front.″
Hershey Chocolate Co. is a division of Hershey Foods Corp., whose stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange.