European toilet paper gets passionate

Thu Mar 9, 3:08 PM ET

LISBON (AFP) - After launching black toilet paper last year, one of Europe's biggest producers of household paper products has introduced a new red version for those wanting to inject more passion into their bathrooms.
Portugal's Renova introduced its new line of red toilet paper -- along with black paper handkerchiefs -- at upscale stores in Austria, France, Germany, Portugal, Spain and the Netherlands last month and it plans to make the items available in other markets, including the US, over the coming months.
"It is a red that makes a huge impact, like a Ferrari," Renova international brand manager Jose Manuel Pinheiro told AFP.
A company statement said the new shade of toilet paper would "target the most hip points in town," adding that red "is the colour of our hearts, of passion, lust, fury, laughter, anger, love, fire."
The prime targets of the black paper handkerchiefs are "pop stars, fashion models, football players, film producers or Hollywood actors," it added.
The company decided to launch the two new products because the black toilet paper it put on the market in 2005 posted strong sales, Pinheiro said.
"We are trying to create a niche market for value-added household products in nations with a high purchasing power," he said.
World-famous department store Harrods put the black handkerchiefs and toilet paper on sale along with gourmet food and drinks at a new "luxury convenience" store it opened earlier this month opposite its main store in London.
Renova charges 2.50 euros (2.98 US dollars) per roll of the coloured toilet paper and six euros for six packages of the black handkerchiefs when the items are ordered through its Internet site.
The company, based in Torres Novas located some 120 kilometres ( 75 miles) northeast of Lisbon, posted sales of nearly 120 million euros last year, about half of it outside of Portugal.
It has introduced novelty household products in the past, including toilet paper with moisturising lotion and multi-coloured paper towels.

Yes, red, formerly the colour of passion will henceforth be the colour of..................ick