Chun King spicing up line of Chinese foodAmericans have...

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October 19, 1993|By Michael Dresser | Michael Dresser,Staff Writer

Chun King spicing up line of Chinese food

Americans have discovered there's more to Chinese food than chop suey, and Chun King Ltd. is expanding its traditional product line to meet the growing demand for spicy fare.

The Cambridge-based food company, which might have the best-known brand in off-the-shelf Chinese food, is jazzing up its traditional chow mein noodles with new seasonings. At the same time, it's putting more kick into condiments by adding hot soy sauces and hot teriyaki sauce to its product line.

The new seasoned chow mein noodle line includes four flavors: almonds, peanuts, sesame bits and garlic/ginger. Besides TC basic hot soy and teriyaki sauce, Chun King also is offering a hot honey-soy sauce and a hot garlic-flavored soy sauce.

Chun King, a subsidiary of Yeo Hiap Seng of Singapore, located its North American headquarters in Cambridge last year, two years after it was bought from RJR Nabisco.

Catonsville company wins national award

A Catonsville software company won a national industry award last week for an educational program aimed at improving the language skills of third- through-eighth-graders.

Skills Bank Corp. received the Award of Excellence from Technology & Learning magazine for its Cornerstone program, which allows students to practice basic grammar and spelling skills while helping teachers track their progress. Technology & Learning Editor Holly Brady praised the program as "unusually thorough in its approach to basic language skills instruction."

Skills Bank President Garry McDaniels said the award will boost the company's name recognition and generate new business. The company expects to exceed $4 million in sales this year and $6 million in 1994.

Skills Bank products have been sold to about 20 percent of the nation's junior and senior high schools, he added.

Mr. McDaniels, a former director of special education programs for the U.S. Department of Education, estimated that the market for Cornerstone alone could reach $25 million a year within the next few years.

Toymax turns ghoulies into grave business

Somebody at Toymax Inc. hasn't grown up -- a condition that could prove quite lucrative.

With an unerring appreciation for the taste and sensibilities of 8- through-12-year-old boys (and some girls), Toymax has introduced Graveyard Ghoulies, which lets kids "create a corpse" by molding body organs from glow-in-the-dark Plasti-Goop in the Creepy Crawlers Workshop.

What's cooler than that?

To make your Graveyard Ghoulies, which cost $13, you'll need the Creepy Crawlers Workshop, a $25 oven in which kids can create their cadavers. It should come as no surprise that the workshop is marketed by Toymax, based in Long Island.

If you're a bit spooked by the price, you should be relieved that you can get more use out of your Creepy Crawlers Workshop than just molding zombies. You can also use it with Creeple Peeple ($20), which uses the same equipment to mold a variety of weird-looking creatures.

New shop is selling self-help handcrafts

Handcrafts from more than 40 developing countries went on sale this month at the SERRV International Gift Shop at 8 Pennsylvania Ave. in Towson.

The shop was opened by SERRV Self-Help Handcrafts of New Windsor and the Maryland Committee for UNICEF as part of a global effort to help impoverished artisans earn an income. Proceeds from the shops also go to support UNICEF's health, education and nutrition programs for children in developing countries.

SERRV also has shops in New Windsor and New York.

Avon will launch lingerie business

Avon Products Inc. plans to launch a U.S. lingerie sales business through its direct selling channels by mid-1994, its chief executive officer said yesterday.

Test marketing of lingerie sales in the United States with Warnaco Group Inc. and existing lingerie sales business in Canada have both been very successful.

Avon hopes to reduce its reliance on its $300 million gift business, CEO James Preston said in a conference call with analysts and reporters.

Embarrassing moment leads to new product

Is this a great country or what?

American innovation, which put man on the moon, now brings us Protecto Pager -- a fake electronic pager that is actually a condom case.

Protecto Pager, which clips on to a pocket just like a real pager, is an example of defense conversion at work. It is made by St. Louis-based Wainwright Industries Inc., a tool-and-die company that has been heavily dependent on McDonnell Douglas and other clients in the struggling defense industry.

The "pager" was invented by Les Wendell, a tooling and machining manager at Wainwright. His inspiration came in a conversation with a female colleague who described her embarrassment when she publicly spilled the contents of her purse -- including condoms.

Protecto Pager, which holds up to three condoms, is being marketed through CONDOMania, a seven-store chain. It will be available nationally in gift and novelty shops for about $14.95.

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