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Hershey's was founded in 1894 and today is the world's largest chocolate manufacturer.
Milton S. Hershey originally did not make chocolate. He made caramels and was enormously successful. He developed a recipe for milk chocolate and sold the caramel business in 1900 for $1 million, an enormous sum back then.
Until 1970, Hershey did not advertise. The company was so well known it was THE chocolate candy. But in 1970, for the first time, another company, Mars, surpassed it in sales. On July 19 that year, Hershey ran it first ad which was a full page on Hershey Syrup. It ran in 114 newspapers. Other ads followed and now they advertise like any other candy company.
Hershey's Kisses were introduced in 1907. Each one was hand wrapped until 1924 when the ribbon was added. Today over 80 million Kisses are made daily.
Chocolate is lethal to dogs. It contains theobromine which stimulates the central nervous system. As little as 2 ounces can be deadly to a dog.
Americans eat almost half the chocolate produced in the world every year, over 3 billion pounds.
Scientific studies have indicated that a small amount of dark chocolate each day, about one ounce, is good for you. It contains flavonoids, a group of antioxidant polyphenols.
The chocolate manufacturing process uses 40% of the world's almonds and 20% of the world's peanuts.
The United States manufactures 7 billion pounds of chocolate and candy every year.
In the United States, chocolate manufacturers use about 3.5 million pounds of whole milk every day in the making of chocolate.
The cacao tree only grows well at latitudes between 20 degrees north or south of the equator.
Hawaii is the only state of the US where cacao beans grow.
About 70% of the world's cocoa beans are grown in West Africa.
It takes around 400 cacao beans to make one pound of chocolate.
California, followed by Pennsylvania, have the most establishments producing chocolate and cocoa products.
In the United States, sales of chocolate candy beat all other types of candy combined by 2 to 1.
In the US, the average person eats 10-12 pounds of chocolate each year. In the United Kingdom, they eat almost twice that amount.
Milk chocolate is preferred over dark chocolate by 80% of Americans.
Chocolate eating habits:
Columbus took cacao beans with him back to Spain on his fourth voyage in 1502.
Physician and naturalist, Hans Sloane spent time in Jamaica in the 18th century. He came up with the idea of mixing their bitter chocolate beverage with milk to improve the flavor. He patented the idea and the beverage became popular in England. It quickly spread to Europe.
Cocoa butter can form in six different crystalline structures. The one called "Form 5" is the best for chocolate candy because it has just the right melting point to be solid a room temperature, but to melt on your tongue.
The Aztecs used cocoa beans as currency. One bean could buy a small amount of food. A few hundred could buy a gold statue.
Chocolate does not cause acne.
Thomas Jefferson loved chocolate. He wrote to John Adams (before either of them were President), "The superiority of chocolate, both for health and nourishment, will soon give it the same preference over tea and coffee in America which it has in Spain."
Candy in the Movies
The first time chocolate appeared in a movie was when Jean Harlow ate some in the 1933 comedy, "Dinner at Eight."
For the movie, "E.T.," Steven Spielberg originally approached Mars about using M&M product placement. They declined, for whatever reason. He then went to Hershey to use Reese's Pieces and they agreed to a deal to promote the film with $1 million in advertising. Within two weeks of the movie's premier, sales of the then little known candy skyrocketed.
M&Ms are named after the two partners who created the candy - Forrest Mars, Sr. and William Murries.
Forrest Mars, Sr. got the idea for M&Ms when he visited Spain during the Spanish Civil War. He met some soldiers who were eating small chocolate pellets covered with a hard candy shell.
The M&Ms were introduced in 1941 as a snack for US GIs serving in World War II. They were a big hit because they did not melt, due to the candy coating.
Originally, the colors were green, yellow, orange, brown, red and purple.
The "M" on each piece of candy was added in 1950.
Peanut M&Ms were introduced in 1954.
Due to concerns about the danger of red dye, the red M&Ms were removed in 1976, even though the red dye in question was not used to make them. In 1987, red was again added to the mix, due to popular demand.
In 1995, a poll was taken to see which new color should be added. Over 10 million people voted. Blue was the winner.
Valentine's Day Candy Trivia
Sales in the US of Valentine's Day candy totals over $1 billion.
The first Valentine's Day boxed candy was created by Richard Cadbury in 1868 when he decorated a candy box with a painting of his daughter with her kitten.
The production of Conversation Hearts totals 8,000,000,000 per year. They are sold out in the six weeks leading up to Valentine's Day. Production then starts for the next year's supply.
People buy 36 million heart shaped boxes of chocolate for Valentine's Day.
In the past, Conversation Hearts were made in other shapes like baseballs, horseshoes and watches.
Each year, at least ten new phrases are introduced for Conversation Heart.
The TV show Jeopardy always includes questions about Conversations Hearts on its Valentine's Day show.
Candy Names Trivia
The Snickers Bar, introduced in 1930, was named after the Mars' family pet horse. Today it is the most popular candy bar in the United States.
Junior Mints were named after a radio show which starred Shirley Temple. The show was called "Junior Miss."
The lollipop was named after the inventor, George Smith's favorite horse, Lolly Pop.
Tootsie Rolls are named after the inventor, Leo Hirshfield's daughter, Tootsie. They were the first penny candy which was individually wrapped.
Andes Candies war originally called Andy's Candies after the founder, Andrew Kanelos. But he soon realized that men were hesitant to give candy to their wives or girl friends with another man's name on the box. Wise Mr. Kanelos changed the name to Andes.
Candy Cotton was originally called Fairy Floss.
Angel Mints were named because when the inventor gave samples to people and asked their reaction, so many of them described the mint as "heavenly" or "divine."
Bonomo Turkish Taffy is not Turkish. Albert Bonomo, the inventor who was from Turkey, just thought the name sounded good.
A contest was run to name the new candy bar. Butterfinger was the winner, suggested by a man who tended to drop things and earned that as his nickname.
Some names of actual old time candy:
Thomas Adams of Staten Island, New York, bought one ton of chicle from Santa Anna, former President of Mexico and victor at The Alamo, who was trying to make enough money to raise an army to return to power in Mexico. Mr. Adams' plan was to use the chicle to produce things like carriage tires, rain boots, toys, masks, and bicycle tires. All of his attempts failed and he was about to throw the rest of the chicle in the East River (!) when he got the idea of using it to make chewing gum. The rest is history.
Black Jack Gum, invented by Thomas Adams was the first flavored gum sold in the United States. It was also the first one to be sold in sticks.
The first bar code scanning equipment was installed in June of 1974 at the Marsh Supermarket in Troy, Ohio. The first item to be scanned using a UPC bar code was a 10 pack of Wrigley's Juicy Fruit Gum. This pack of gum is on display at the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of American History.
Wrigley's originally sold soap and baking powder. As a sales gimmick, William Wrigley decided to add chewing gum to each box of baking powder they sold. It soon became evident that the gum was more popular than the baking powder. They then concentrated on selling the chewing gum and eventually dropped the other products.
National Cotton Candy Day in the United States is December 7.
The first lollipop making machines could produce 40 per minute. Today's machines can produce 5,900 per minute.
Cole Porter had nine pounds of fudge shipped to him each month from his home town.
William Schrafft, founder of Schrafft's candy company in Boston, promoted the jelly bean as a treat to be sent along with the Union soldiers during the Civil War. Their popularity remained after the war was over. Billions are now sold every year.
Over 1 million miles of Twizzlers are produced every year.
About 2 billion candy canes are sold in the month before Christmas.
In the United States, adults over the age of 18 consume 65% of the total amount of candy eaten.
99% of American households buy candy at least once a week.
By 1800, more than 380 factories in the United States were producing penny candy.
On average, Americans eat about 25 pounds of candy per year. But the people of Denmark far exceed them by consuming about 36 pounds per year, the most of any country in the world.
The biggest candy selling times of the year, in order, are Halloween, Christmas, Easter and Valentine's Day, in that order.
In 1956, chemist William Mitchell discovered how to put carbon dioxide into a solid. It took General Foods until 1974 to figure out what to do with it when they created the Pop Rocks. When Pop Rocks first came out, some parents and teachers thought they were a health risk and tried, to no avail, to get kids to not eat them.
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