|Thursday, 25 October 2012 16:10|
This question isn’t so much difficult as it is long. The short answer is that each is a popular and permanent part of American culture. The longer answer takes, well, longger.
Halloween is the time when candy and confection makers introduce seasonal products designed to drive sales, while capturing the imaginations of long time and new customers. With each passing year, these seem to get better and more creative.
When I learned that there was a candy corn-themed Oreo cookie, it was life affirming. Pumpkin spiced Pringles, Cadbury Scream Eggs (modeled after the Easter Crème Egg with a green colored center), Halloween Peeps, Halloween Kit Kat bars, Reese’s Peanut Butter Pumpkins and others like these make the end of October really rock for the ultra-sweets loving population of all ages, especially me.
Homer Bad Man
I never gave much thought to gummi candy as a Halloween offering until I saw an episode of The Simpsons.
It was in the ninth episode of the sixth season of the program, "Homer Bad Man," where Homer steals a rare gummi candy from a candy convention. The Gummi Venus de Milo, described as the “rarest gummi of all designed by artists who work exclusively in the field of gummi.” Were there such people and what were they doing with this media of confection? Turns out, quite a bit.
Gummi Candy: a flexible category
With the possibility of exotic flavors, textures, and shapes, the gummi candy category grew as part of the non-chocolate category, growing by 4.5% in 2011, according to an article in “Professional Candy Buyer” magazine. Shapes like bugs and worms are popular among teens and pre-teens. Gummi candy is relatively easy to package and is a good vehicle for non-traditional flavors. It is this flexibility that gives “gummi artisans” the media they need to be at their creative best. Jelly Belly Pet Tarantulas and/or Jelly Belly Pet Rats are just two examples.
The difference gummi or jelly candy offers over others is the sensory experience possible. They fire the imagination with interesting aromas, tastes, textures, and themes that help set them apart.
So happy Halloween everyone! And I will see you at the candy store November 1, 2012 snagging all the leftover candy marked half off.
What Do Gummi Candy, The Simpsons, Halloween, and Sweetness All Have In Common?