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History of Candy Companies
Annabelle Candy Co.
The Annabelle Candy Co., Inc. was established in 1950 by Sam Altshuler, a Russian immigrant who arrived in the United States in 1917. He named it after his daughter, Annabelle. After perfecting the recipe for years, he finally become successful with the Rock Road candy bar and began producing it in San Francisco, California. The candy quickly became popular on the West Coast where it is still popular today.
In 1965, Annabelle moved to Hayward, California where it operates today.
In 1972, the Annabelle Candy Co. bought Golden Nugget Candy Company, also of San Francisco. They were the makers of Big Hunk and Look candy bars which are now made by Annabelle.
In 1978, Annabelle also bought the Cardinet Candy Co. which made the U-NO and Abba Zaba candy bars and began manufacturing them.
Today, the Annabelle Candy Co., which started as a family business, is one of the largest independently owned candy bar manufacturers in the United States producing some of the most popular candy bars on the West Coast.
The Hershey Company
Milton S. Hershey had a rough start in the candy business. Before he was successful, he started two candy companies, one in Philadelphia, one in New York City, which both failed. Undaunted, he moved back to Lancaster Pennsylvania and gave it a third try. This time he was successful.
He formed the Lancaster Caramel Company, selling caramel made with fresh milk. This company grew to 1,400 employees and shipped caramels all over the United States and Europe.
In 1893, Milton Hershey visited the Columbian Exposition in Chicago. There he became fascinated with the art of making chocolate. He purchased some German machines and shipped them to Lancaster. At first, he used the chocolate only to coat his caramels. But he knew there was a growing interest and demand for chocolate itself. Soon he formed the Hershey Chocolate Company. Since the Swiss kept the art of chocolate making a closely guarded secret, he experimented until he perfected a formula using milk, sugar and cocoa. He became the first American to have a formula for milk chocolate and fulfilled his dream of mass producing the Hershey bar, making chocolate, once a luxury of the rich, affordable for everyone.
Sales of chocolate soon far outpaced the sales of caramel. In 1900, Hershey sold the Lancaster Caramel Company for $1 million, which was an enormous sum back then. Needing more room to expand production, in 1903, he moved the company to nearby Derry Township, where he was born. This location proved ideal due to its proximity to port cities where he could get the sugar and cocoa beans he needed and also an abundance of hard working people to run his chocolate factory.
The Town of Hershey
Hershey believed that if his workers were treated fairly and were able to live in a comfortable, pleasant environment, they would better workers. He built a company town, unlike many others which were designed to take advantage of the workers. His town, which, of course, was named Hershey, was a model community. It had homes for ordinary workers and executives alike. He built churches, schools recreational facilities, parks and a trolley system. Later a community building, convention hall, department store, swimming pool, amusement park and lots more schools were added.
Why So Many Schools?
Milton Hershey, as a farm boy, did not have an opportunity to receive much of an education himself when he was growing up. He was determined to provide educational opportunities for the children of his town. In 1909, Milton and his wife Catherine established a school for orphaned boys, the Hershey Industrial School. Today it is named the Milton Hershey School and is also open to girls. In 1918, with no fanfare, Hershey gave most of his wealth to the Hershey Trust to be held for the Hershey Industrial School.
Milton Hershey died in 1945, but his legacy lives on. Today, The Hershey Company is the largest manufacturer of chocolate, non-chocolate confectionery products and chocolate-related grocery products in North America. It exports its products to 90 countries throughout the world.
Henri Nestlé of Switzerland, began his company in the mid 1860s. He was a pharmacist and his goal was to develop an alternative to breast milk for infants who could not be breastfed. He experimented with various combinations of cow's milk, sugar and wheat. His new product was called Farine Lactée Henri Nestlé. Nestlé's formula was able to save the life of a premature baby who could not tolerate his mother's milk or any other formula they tried. Doctors had given up on him. With Nestlé's formula, his life was saved and people instantly became interested in the product. It quickly began selling in most of Europe.
In 1874, Jules Monnerat purchased the Nestlé Company. He developed a condensed milk product to compete with the Anglo-Swiss Condensed Milk Company
In 1875, Daniel Peter figured out how cocoa powder could be combined with milk to make milk chocolate. He started a company which quickly grew to become the world's leading chocolate manufacturer. Later, he merged with Nestlé.
World War I brought government contracts for powdered and condensed milk, but when the war was over, the contracts were gone. Also, people returned to drinking fresh milk. The company posted its first loss. But they reorganized and in the 1920s, making chocolate increased to its second most important product. New products were added - Milo, a powdered beverage, malted milk, powered buttermilk for infants and in 1938, Nescafé, an instant coffee. It was followed in the early 1940s by Nestea.
World War II resulted in a huge increase in the production of Nescafé which was a staple of the soldiers. After the war, the company continued to diversify, even venturing into the cosmetic and pet food industries. In 1985, they bought out Carnation.
But despite all the diversification, Nestlé is best known for its ever popular chocolate bars and beverages like Nestlé's Crunch Bar (now also made into an ice cream bar) and Nestlé's Quick, also Smarties, the Kit Kat Bar, Nestlé's Maxibon and Nestlé's Extreme. "N-E-S-T-L-E-S. Nestlé's makes the very best … choc………..olate."
Peter Paul Halajian, an Armenian, was a candy retailer in New Haven, Connecticut area in the early 1900s. His brother-in-law, Calvin K. Kazanjian, had an idea to not sell candy retail, but to manufacturer it and sell it wholesale. In 1919, Peter Paul and fellow Armenians Jacob Hagopian, George Shamlian, Harry Kazanjian and Jacob Chouljian pooled their resources and formed a company. Dutch candy manufacturer Cole Ebersole was included in this venture. They called the company "Peter Paul Candy Manufacturing Co. of Conn." They used that name, not only because he was the founder, but because the name "Peter Paul" was already associated with candy in the New Haven area.
They sold various kinds of candies, but because of sugar and coconut shortages during World War II, they dropped most of the brands they were selling and concentrated on the Mounds bar. The Almond Joy bar was introduced in 1946. It was a replacement for the Dream Bar which had been created in 1936 and was made with coconut and diced almonds.
During the 1970s, the company introduced the jingle, "Sometimes you feel like a nut. Sometimes you don't. Peter Paul Almond Joy's got nuts. Mounds don't."
In 1978, Peter Paul merged with Cadbury Company. In 1988, Hershey purchased the US portion of the company. Hershey introduced some limited edition candy bars in the 2000s like Double Chocolate and Piña Colada Almond Joy in 2004, Milk Chocolate Passion Fruit and White Chocolate Key Lime Almond Joy in 2005, and Toasted Coconut Almond Joy in 2006.
The Peter Paul company no longer exists, but the name still appears on wrappers as part of the bars' brand names.
Andes Candies started in 1921 in Chicago by Andrew Kanelos. It was originally called Andy's Candies, but he quickly realized that men were not anxious to give candy to their wives or girlfriends which was called "Andy's." So he changed the name to " Andes." They made a variety of boxed chocolates and sold them from a small storefront. Eventually, they built a factory to manufacture the candy and the business grew to 150 stores.
In 1950, they added the Andes Crème de Menthe which is now the most popular after dinner mint.
The Wrigley Jr. Company was founded in 1891 by William Wrigley, Jr. Located in Chicago, the company originally sold soap and baking powder. The year after it start, in 1892, Mr. Wrigley decided to add chewing gum to each can of baking powder as a sales gimmick. It worked, but the chewing gum became more popular than the baking powder. They decided to concentrate on the gum itself which become immensely popular. That's why, today we have Wrigley's chewing gum, but no Wrigley's Baking Powder.
Today, Wrigley products are sold in more than 180 countries. There are 14 factories around the world including the countries of United States, Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, Spain, France, Poland, Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Kenya, Taiwan, India, China, and Russia.
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