Researchers have developed a new chewing gum formulation that contains bacteria able to tackle consumers' bad breath, offering new opportunities in the market.
The gum, developed by Blis Technologies from New Zealand, contains the natural bacteria streptococcus salivarius K12, which is thought to be found on healthy tongues.
Individuals that suffer from bad breath are believed to have a deficiency of the bacteria.
Blis is currently marketing its original product as more of a medical treatment available through dentists and pharmacists. Yet, a spokesperson from Blis confirmed to ConfectioneryNews.com that further developments were in the pipeline.
"We are also working on a version for people with less serious problems…this will be a lower dosage, smaller and more convenient pack size with pricing aimed at the confectionery market."
He added this confectionery friendly formulation was expected to be available in around six months.
The original product will be distributed across the Australian and US markets and, if successful, a more widely available confectionery version could well have real potential to make inroads into an industry worth around $2bn per year in the US alone.
The new gum may be a lucrative niche product, possibly helping a small outsider gain a solid foothold in the market as the industry's giants fight each other to maintain profit margins.