It is, without doubt, one of the banes of the modern world, up there with dodgy dictatorships, Greg Rusedski and reality television.
But the curse of chewing gum sticking to your feet/trousers/shoes/bum could soon be over, thanks to a UK firm based in Mostyn, Flintshire.
Today that business, Revolymer, has announced a major funding package, with Lehman Brothers International, Naxos Capital and Sloane Robinson Private Equity stumping up £10m (€12.7m) in the polymer technology company.
This investment could just lead Revolymer to the holy grail of gum irritation: the balance between cohesion and adhesion that delivers a great chewing effect but will also peal off surfaces.
Revolymer, originally founded in 2005 at the University of Bristol, is at the forefront of low-adhesion technology and could, in 2008, introduce its first products into the commercial marketplace.
Already more than 1,000 pieces of chewing gum have been produced in Revolymer’s labs and blind tests of the product versus commercial chewing gums showed it "to have as good a chew in terms of mouth feel and texture as the leading brands". Street trials have also been conducted with local authorities. CEO Roger Pettman says the firm will be working with the chewing gum industry, aiming to bring products to the market in the near future.
"We are currently finishing the final formulation of our product which will contain no unnecessary additives or animal products," says Pettman.
To see a live demonstration of Revolymer’s amazing gum, click here and then click on "Shoe testing".