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Green M&M plays Cupid for Mars' new Valentine's Day marketing campaign. - 


Scott Jagow: A certain candy-maker has decided to go green. But I assure you, this has nothing to do with global warming. Andrea Gardner reports.

Andrea Gardner: You've heard it for years: the rumor that green M&Ms are supposed to be an aphrodisiac. Well Mars, the company that makes M&Ms, is hoping to cash in on that urban legend. The company has come out with bright green bags of nothing but green M&Ms as the Valentine's Day retail season heats up.

Marketing analyst Marissa Gluck from Radar Research says the move is more than just a pop-culture tie-in.

Marissa Gluck: They're competing on a really cluttered shelf. So they gain two advantages. One is that they stand out in a shelf full of red and pink candies. And the second is that they seem a little bit more hip.

The sexy ad campaign might be a risk for M&Ms, traditionally a wholesome brand popular with kids and parents. But Gluck says the company is banking that consumers will get the joke.

In Los Angeles, I'm Andrea Gardner for Marketplace.