“Discontinued” Discontent

7 Jul
seaskisuntanlotionWhenever I fall in love with a product, the retail gods take it off the shelves. If I was given a dollar everytime this happened, I’d be rich.
I  remember my mother used to complain about this. She loved a perfume called Demi-Jour by Houbigant. Then the company stopped making it. After she passed away, all I had left was an empty bottle, which I cherished. A few years later my sister discovered that a new company now makes Demi-Jour:  Dana Classic Fragrances of New York. She got me a box for my birthday, which I covet like liquid gold. 
The same thing happened to my favorite perfume: Milles Fleurs by Crabtree & Evelyn. For some unknown reason it was discontinued in 1980, and I never liked any of their replacements. 
What is it about these long-lost products that we would love to have back? Memories of our best summer? Our first love? Our youth? If I could find a bottle of Sea & Ski suntan lotion — a 1960’s brand once more popular than Coppertone — I would take a good whiff and be transported back to my Cape Breton summers as a teenager. But it’s no longer made and all that remains is the trademark.
This happens with food, too. There was a cookie that my grandmother bought similar to Arnott’s Lemon Crisp but under another brand which I can’t for the life of me remember. I have scoured the shelves of my local store but can’t find it. It may be available in another province, in the States or even in Europe, but not here. She also kept a handful of green spearmint jelly-filled buttermints in her apron pocket. They are nowhere to be found, only the ones with blue peppermint jelly. Not a big thing, I know. But it’s a detail about this wonderful lady that I wish I could hold in my hand again. 
Now my daughter is complaining about this same phenomena: the demise of Time Out chocolate bars by Cadbury, introduced to Canada in 2001 but discontinued here due to lagging sales. Our local pita shop Extreme Pita, that stopped offering pineapple. No more chocolate peanut butter bars sold at Starbucks. Don’t know if this is a local decision or franchise wide. What does all this mean?
That I pay way too much attention to this stuff and am a sentimental, nostalgia junkie or that my taste doesn’t run with the majority of consumers out there, and anything I really like will eventually go the way of the dodo bird. 
Either way, it’s annoying. 

10 Responses to ““Discontinued” Discontent”

  1. Selena Robins July 7, 2015 at 4:43 pm #

    Happens to me a lot as well. I think it’s because we tend not to go with trends and mass market appeal. It’s all about what is going to bring in the largest amount of money for companies. Can’t blame them, they are business, but for crying out loud, remember those of us who like the things we love because they were good, and we don’t do well with change!

  2. kathleenkaskawrites July 7, 2015 at 10:07 pm #

    I think it was ArmorAll who used to make these giant wet-wipes to clean your car. I loved them. No matter how dirty my car was, even if it was covered in mud, 5 wet-wipes could clean the entire car. No car wash, no garden hose. Just the wipes. The car would come out sparking clean with no streaks. One day I went to buy a box and they were gone forever. As always, I enjoyed your post, Nancy.

    • nancyelauzon July 8, 2015 at 1:40 am #

      Thanks, Kathleen! I know you feel my pain, LOL

  3. Jewel Divas Style July 9, 2015 at 8:20 am #

    It’s bad in Australia. We might get something for awhile but then won’t import it any more even though it’s still available overseas. Or the companies claim no none is buying it, yet every time you see it, it’s sold out and they need to restock. So I don’t know who’s lying about it not selling.

    It happened with a bag of my fave potato chips, Light & Tangy, yum, the company stopped making them, I emailed, they said no one was buying. The other companies alternatives are crap.

    And now it might happen with my fave Olay Covergirl face powder, they’ve either stopped making it or changed the container, but I’ll have to stock up or change to the other one. 😦

    • nancyelauzon July 10, 2015 at 1:46 pm #

      It doesn’t seem to make a difference when you complain to a company … I have in the past too but I’m just a voice in the wilderness!

  4. Kate Johnston July 10, 2015 at 2:17 am #

    I once used a wonderful facial cleanser which was made with lemon and milk. I can still picture the tube, but I can’t remember the brand name. I never ever broke out while I used it. Then it was discontinued in the States. 10 years later I found it on a trip to Germany, but my God, it cost about as much as my trip to Germany, so I didn’t buy it. I still regret that decision to this day. I should have thought it through — I could have contacted the maker of the product to see about getting some back in the States.

    Things like that are very painful indeed. Teaches you to not take things for granted, I s’pose!

    • nancyelauzon July 10, 2015 at 1:27 pm #

      Nothing worse than the “one that got away” lol!

  5. Vickie Fee July 10, 2015 at 4:34 am #

    Nancy, I think part of it is because scent evokes memories in a powerful way. I wish I could bottle the smell of my grandma’s kitchen – bacon frying, fresh cantaloupe, coffee brewing, the scent of the basic face powder she wore and an undernote of my grandfather’s Old Spice. It sounds awful, but I’d love to be able to breathe it in again — like your cherished mother’s perfume!

    • nancyelauzon July 10, 2015 at 1:49 pm #

      So true, Vickie, scent (and taste) is powerful. My grandmother used to make a blueberry cake with caramel sauce that I hadn’t had in years. One day my great aunt (her much younger sister) made it using her recipe. When I tasted a bite, it literally brought tears to my eyes!

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