NO, as part of the COM Health Week, we will not deal here with remedies from grandmothers with wacky (and sometimes surprisingly conclusive) effects, but rather consumer brands. 💊 What if medicinal products also had the right to a second life? Like Coca-Cola, developed by Dr. Pemberton in his Atlanta laboratory… which now litter our supermarket shelves and not only. Finally - and sorry to break a myth - it seems that the famous soda was never really a medicine. Admittedly sold in pharmacies at its beginnings, it was very quickly bought for purely gustatory purposes. So what are the products that consumption patterns have diverted?
# 1 - The Charterhouse 🌿
At the head of this TOP sits the appellation, and now brand, Chartreuse. This alcoholic drink comes straight from the XVIIe century, when Parisian monks claimed to have found the recipe for " elixir of long life ". Just that ! These herbalists would have received, from the Duke of Estrées, a unique manuscript in which was recorded the miracle formula. Today, the Chartreuse is no longer known for the same virtues but still makes liqueur lovers happy.
# 2 - Ovomaltine 🍫
Ovomaltine chocolate bars were invented by Swiss pharmacist Georg Wander in 1865. His will? Fight against malnutrition with malt. Later, his son will add egg, milk and cocoa to the recipe, giving him more taste appeal. The medicinal preparation quickly becomes the “healthy” chocolate bar that we know. The brand is not stopping there, moreover, and is diversifying the fragrances and textures of its products. Today, there is even an Ovomaltine spread that the We Are COM team recommend to all gourmet communicators. Yes, “Ovolmaltine is dynamic”! 💥
# 3 - Danone 🐮
Danone yogurts, essential for dairy products, were sold in pharmacies at the beginning of the XNUMXth century.e century. At the time, researchers were studying the beneficial effects of yogurt on intestinal problems, one of which was Isaac Carasso. The latter is the founder of the Danone brand, a name which pays homage to his son Daniel. A little more history? Yoghurt would have been used for the first time in France by François Ier to relieve his stomach ulcers. Would you like a little bifidus for dessert?
# 4 - Mariani wine 🍷
Mariani wine, or “coca Mariani” or “tonic wine”, is a drink combining Bordeaux wine with infused coca bush leaves. Its creator Angelo Mariani, a Corsican apothecary, perfected his brand new recipe for spirits in 1863. The drink with medicinal properties was supposed to bring tone and health at the rate of two to three glasses per day. Very quickly, the product was all the rage, the Belle Epoque was crazy about it: men of letters, popes and heads of state consumed it per liter. Today, it is still possible to obtain this “tonic wine” but of course the coca bush leaf is no longer part of the list of ingredients.
# 5 - Cachou 🍬
It was in 1880 that the Toulouse pharmacist Léon Lajaunie perfected the recipe for Cachou, the famous liquorice candy sold in its emblematic metal box. The product promise? Good digestion and fresh breath. The iconic pastille, listed as a national heritage, has never changed the recipe for its success and that's good!
# 6 - Birkenstock 👡
Birkenstock is the "casual" and "hype" shoe brand par excellence, which was even recently acquired by LVMH. But before that, this family business founded in the XIXe century was specialized in orthopedic footwear. A beautiful success story for this product long considered unsightly and originally reserved for the medical professions. Like what, comfort and functionality can be at the forefront of luxury regardless of the size.
# 7 - Vichy pastille 💧
Add sugar and mineral salts to Vichy thermal water, and there you have a brilliant idea. In 1825, the chemist Jean-Pierre-Joseph d'Arcet transformed this famous Auvergne water into a medicinal tablet. This remedy soothing the acidity of the stomach will become a confectionery in its own right in 1914. Fancy an anecdote people ? It seems that the Empress Eugenie, wife of Napoleon III, was crazy about these sweets; which would have influenced a large part of the imperial aristocracy.
# 8 - Byrrh 🍹
This aperitif drink was also considered a medicine in the XNUMXth century.e century. Pharmacists praised the tonic virtues of Byrrh, this cooked wine flavored with cinchona. However, a lawsuit was brought against the inventor brothers, Simon and Pallade Violet, due to disregarded medical regulations. Very quickly, the product established itself as a staple of mass consumption. One last info? The brand had difficulty establishing itself in Anglo-Saxon countries, where the “byrrh” sound is more assimilated to beer.
Consumption practices change with medical advances. And it is happy! The inventions of yesteryear have become our favorite products and have established themselves in our daily lives over time. The stories of the brands have not finished surprising us 🤓