OPHELIA: HIGH TIME FOR LAUNDRY TEA SYSTEM

SAN DIEGO -- Ophelia Products Co. here plans to brew up increased detergent aisle sales with its Laundry Tea System of premeasured detergent pouches.The Laundry Tea System received a patent last May and was test marketed in independent stores in California, Arizona and parts of Texas for several months.Ophelia Products wants to license Laundry Tea to detergent manufacturers around the country who

SAN DIEGO -- Ophelia Products Co. here plans to brew up increased detergent aisle sales with its Laundry Tea System of premeasured detergent pouches.

The Laundry Tea System received a patent last May and was test marketed in independent stores in California, Arizona and parts of Texas for several months.

Ophelia Products wants to license Laundry Tea to detergent manufacturers around the country who will market it under their own brand names, but include the phrase "Laundry Tea System." In February, Ophelia Products signed an agreement with QVP Family Products, Amherst, N.Y., to market Laundry Tea under the Avail brand name in 13 Southeastern and Southwestern states.

In March, four stockkeeping units of Laundry Tea, produced by Ophelia Products and marketed under the Summit brand name, will be hitting store shelves in California. Ophelia Products also owns the rights to the Exact, Laundry Tea Scents and Qwick brand names. Each brand name has a different formulation.

"Laundry Tea is basically a third laundry detergent category, in addition to powders and liquids," Karen Huff, vice president, sales & marketing, Ophelia Products, and inventor of the Laundry Tea System, told SN.

Upon contact with water, the Laundry Tea bag inflates. During the wash it collapses as it releases detergent. After the wash is completed, the bag can be added to the dryer to aid in eliminating static cling.

Laundry Tea will be advertised with freestanding coupon inserts and in-store demonstrations. Regional television commercials are planned to begin airing this summer.