Tucked away in Ann Arbor, Michigan is NewProductWorks (NPW). Affiliated with global market research consultants GfK, NPW has a stock of about 120,000 different products across 350 categories. There is just about one of everything crammed onto the shelves. For this reason, companies and individuals looking to create and market a new product will pay a hefty sum to visit, explore, and study the products that succeeded–and those that didn’t. NPW has been given the nickname “the Museum of Failed Products,” and considering that, depending on the industry, as much as 50% of new products fail, that nickname is dead-on.
GfK Executive Vice President of Market Opportunities and Innovation Elliot Rossen told CBS News that when people design a new product, they are asking themselves, “How can we change the world? How can we change people’s lives and the way people work?” However, sometimes, the world was not looking for that particular change.
These eight astounding fiascos top the list of failed products:
Vegetable Flavored Jell-O
Jell-O was quite the fad in the 1950s and 1960s. Even these Jell-O salads had their heyday, with exciting and questionable recipes like Ring-Around-the-Tuna (“A beautiful jewel-like entree salad for your luncheon or buffet table”). While Jell-O continued to come out with adventurous gelatin concoctions, they couldn’t quite get these vegetable flavors to stick. Celery, Mixed Vegetable, Italian Salad, and Seasoned Tomato Jell-O have long since faded away.