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Saturday, October 20, 2007

Candy Teases: Edition Three

Name: Tootsie Pop Drops
Brand: Tootsie
Description: Fruit flavored hard candies with a Tootsie Roll center
Release Date: Early 2008
Notes: Tootsie Pop Drops will return next year after a long absence from store shelves. This is good news, because it was especially sad that the Blow Pop Minis were on the market (blech) and the obviously superior Tootsie Pop Drops were nowhere to be found.

UPDATE 3/22/2008: They are pretty much like the original, a little smaller but a very good return. Here’s the review with photos.

imageName: Reese’s Select Clusters Candy
Brand: Hershey’s
Description: Peanut clusters made with premium ingredients
Release Date: August 2008
Notes: I have no idea how these will be different from regular Reese’s products ... except maybe they’ll improve the quality.

imageName: Werther’s Original Caramel Chocolate (Milk & Dark)
Brand: Storck
Description: Rich milk chocolate marbled with smooth, creamy caramel in fine European tradition
Release Date: November 2007
Notes: I actually tried these ... I was hoping for something as rich and satisfying as Storck Chocolate Riesen. Until I can get a hold of the real packaging so I can read the label, I’m not able to do a full review. 

(Images courtesy of the respective manufacturers.)

Related Candies

  1. Candy Teases: Edition Two
  2. Candy Teases - New Products

POSTED BY Cybele AT 10:15 am     CandyNew Product AnnouncementFeatured NewsFun StuffNewsComments (4)

Saturday, October 6, 2007

This Week in Candy - I’m Going to Meet All the Candy Bloggers

Littlejohn's Caramel KissesTechnically this happened last week, not this week, but bear with me. Last Friday I got to meet another one of my fellow candy bloggers (I have a set of three in-person meets so far!). Joanna from SugarSavvy.net was in town and we went out to lunch at the Farmers Market (because it was the densest candy location I could think of near my office). We had a little lunch with the incredible view of Littlejohn’s Toffee & Fudge. They were wrapping their slick and gorgeous caramel kisses (caramel covered marshmallows). Joanna bought some penuche, a pecan praline for a friend and I also got a praline and a piece of honeycomb (because it looked so good on Rosa’s post over at SugarSavvy ... but I ate it and can’t review it now). I probably jabbered on a lot about candy, but it’s pretty rare that I get to talk to anyone about candy except through the blog.

She also gave me a wonderful selection of four chocolates by Xocolatl de David. I’ve gobbled them up without taking their picture or reviewing them. (I’m sure I’ll have them again and do some coverage.) Mmmm ... dark and scorched fleur de sel caramels coated in rich chocolate. I definitely have to visit Portland one of these days.

As another update, the winner for the Ultimate Candy Expo Box was Kimberly. It was a little warm in both our locations last week, so I’m boxing up a list of her top requests and a bunch of other stuff to send off on Monday. There were 537 valid entries (a few doubles on the comment thread and a few that came in via email). I’m kind of 21st century in my drawing method. I export the entire list to an spreadsheet. Sort it (in this case by email address) and then have a random number generator tell me which entry won.

I’m thinking about running another giveaway, this time filled with Limited Edition items (some you may have loved, many you may have hated!). Any thoughts?

KeyCardAs a little follow up to another post earlier this week, Hershey’s has named Richard Lenny’s replacement. They’re promoting from within and have tapped David J. West (43) as the new President, CEO and Director. West’s current position is Chief Operating Officer, Exec. VP, Sr. VP and Pres of the North American Commercial Group (see, he’ll have a much shorter title!). Don’t worry about Lenny (55),  he’s leaving with plenty of compensation for his hard work this year: a $1.1 million base salary and $10.25 million in long-term compensations ... that’s just this year. (He has some other yet unexercised options worth $23.5 million.) More about Lenny’s history with the company here. Of the 20 top executives in Hershey, West was the youngest in senior management.

Chew on That has their monthly roundup of answers from bloggers. October’s topic is “What is the one thing in your refrigerator or pantry that you cannot live without?” As I’m not the cook in my household, my answer isn’t an ingredient, just something I eat.

Monday: Reese’s Whipps (4 out of 10)

Tuesday: Java Twix (8 out of 10)

Wednesday: Limited Edition Hot Cocoa Kisses (5 out of 10)

Thursday: GudFud Stuffed Marshmallows (6 out of 10)

Friday: Chocolate Poppers (6 out of 10)

Healthy Friday Bonus: Welch’s Fruit ‘n Yogurt Snacks (6 out of 10)

Weekly average was 5.833 with 50% chocolate content.

Related Candies

  1. This Week in Candy - Chicago Bound
  2. This Week in Candy - Naturally!
  3. This Week in Candy - Too Hot
  4. This Week in Candy - A Giant Craving
  5. Confetti & Agrumetti

POSTED BY Cybele AT 1:26 pm     CandyFeatured NewsNewsComments (7)

Monday, October 1, 2007

Hershey’s CEO to Retire

Richard H. Lenny, the CEO, President and Chair of The Hershey Company is calling it quits at the end of the year. He took his current position in 2001.

You can read the press release below, which is obviously geared towards investors and not consumers, because not once does it mention anything good that’s happened since Lenny took over ... a period which saw the addition of PGPR to Hershey’s chocolate, the swapping of real milk chocolate in the Fifth Avenue bar to subpar mockolate and of course their support for the Grocery Manufacturers Association proposal to lower the standards of identity for chocolate (a reversal from their earlier position logged in 2000). Oh, yeah, and the closing of the Smith Falls, ONT and Oakdale, CA along with many smaller factories totalling at least 1,500 people directly.

HERSHEY, Pa., Oct. 1 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/—Richard H. Lenny, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Hershey Company, has informed the Board of Directors that he intends to retire at the end of 2007. First elected as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company in March 2001, Mr. Lenny was elected Chairman of the Board in December 2001.

In commenting on the announced retirement, Robert H. Campbell, Chair of the Company’s Compensation and Executive Organization Committee, said: “On behalf of the Hershey board of directors, stockholders, and employees, we thank Rick for his leadership over this past six and one-half years. During this time, the Company developed and has been executing its value-enhancing strategy with the over-arching goal of building stockholder value over the long-term. Under Rick’s leadership, through a combination of core brand growth, disciplined global expansion, and improved margins, Hershey’s total stockholder return was higher than that of the S&P food group and significantly outperformed the S&P 500. In addition, Rick has assembled an excellent leadership team that we’re confident will realize Hershey’s growth potential.

“The board has begun the succession process and looks forward to making an announcement in the near future. Once announced, there will be an orderly transition from Rick to his successor. We wish Rick all the best as he concludes his role with Hershey,” Campbell concluded.

“My years at Hershey have been extremely rewarding as I’ve been honored to lead a dedicated and engaged organization. During this time, we undertook major challenges, all focused on building a strong foundation for the benefit of all our stakeholders. I’m extremely proud of my Hershey colleagues and all that they have accomplished. I also want to thank our board of directors for its keen insights, support, and guidance over the past several years,” said Lenny. “The long-term prospects for our category and particularly for our company remain promising. I look forward to working closely with my successor so that the transition to new leadership will be effective and seamless.” (source)

If I were in charge, I’d go private. If I were the Hershey Trust, I’d slowly buy the company back. They have (or at least it looks like they have) the capital to do it. Move away from all for the profit business and move to become and socially and ecologically responsible company both in the United States and abroad. Mars has a huge advantage over Hershey’s in that it is privately owned and can take bigger risks when the consumer confectionery market is in flux as it is now.

Hershey’s should get back to making quality confectionery products at affordable prices, pay people a decent wage and the Hershey Trust will be able to continue the Milton Hershey School without problems. After all, the Trust is there to help mold disadvantaged youth - give them the education and boost that they need. Are they really teaching them anything if they abandon the town, communities and ideals that Hershey built?

More at the Wall Street Journal.

POSTED BY Cybele AT 11:27 am     CandyFeatured NewsNewsComments (11)

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

All Candy Expo - Link Wrapping

The Show Floor at All Candy ExpoOf course I wasn’t the only writer covering the All Candy Expo and I’m glad, otherwise I wouldn’t know half this stuff. So here are some extra reads if you’re inclined:

Bloggers

  • I met up with Ginny for a little while and we walked around the floor and talked about candy (of course). Here are her thoughts from the show.

  • The AV Club (at the Onion) got all sugared up. They have a roundup of the products that stood out to them.

  • Sera, Brian & Bonnie from CandyAddict.com were on hand and have copious (and continuing) coverage of the Expo here.

  • Chicagoist returned with a great list with lots of stuff that didn’t make as much noise as the big boys.

  • Kim from ChicagoParent.com has a great write up from a mom’s point of view.

    Entry to All Candy ExpoBig Media

  • Marketwatch: Can’t Eat Candy? Think of Gum as a Sweet Treat.

  • Chicago Tribune Blog: Sweet Discoveries at All Candy Expo (they saw the tea flavored Bali’s Best candies that I completely missed)

  • Brandweek: Dateline: Chicago’s All Candy Expo (includes mention of the new limited edition movie tie-is)

  • Chicago Sun Times: A Mixed Bag of Tasty Treats

  • Here’s the official press release from the All Candy Expo where they talked about the different trends (you can see how many of the reporters parroted that in their listings).

  • Of course some of the coverage was about Mars coming out in support of higher standards for chocolate identity and pledging no matter what the FDA decides they can do, they’re going to Keep it Real

  • Other Coverage by Me

  • I did a little coverage on Serious Eats: Trickle Down Chocolate Trends & All Candy Expo New Products.

  • If you haven’t already, take a listen to Munchcast (and of course bookmark it for the future!). Yes, I know my voice makes me sound like I’m twelve, but I promise I’m a grown woman.

  • Finally, the National Confectioners Association site also has a nice roundup of coverage including video links!

    Related Candies

    1. All Candy Expo - Tuesday Wrappers
    2. All Candy Expo - Tuesday Noon Update
    3. All Candy Expo - Monday Wrappers
    4. Navigating a Candy Expo

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 11:20 am     All Candy ExpoCandyFeatured NewsNewsComments (1)

    Tuesday, September 25, 2007

    Candy Revival: Good ‘n Fruity Returns

    I got word during All Candy Expo that Good ‘n Fruity, the fruity version of Good & Plenty is returning next year.

    I believe the revamped product was test marketed last year in Oregon, as the photo shown here by permission from ravenzachary shows (or perhaps he got a frighteningly old box).

    The original Good ‘n Fruity was a clear sweet jelly center with a variety of fruit flavored candy shells. According to Wikipedia, back in 1988 the centers were changed to improve the flavor and were rather like pieces of fruit licorice with a candy shell.

    I have no recollection of ever eating Good ‘n Fruity, I always preferred the licorice parent. But I’ll give it a whirl! If only to find out if they’ve squandered their Dr. Frankenstien powers on this candy instead of reviving the Bar None.

    We’ll find out in late February 2008 whether Zombie candies are as good as the original ones.

    UPDATE 3/11/2008: I finally got a hold of a box via CandyWarehouse ... here’s the review.

    Related Candies

    1. Goodbye Tart n Tiny
    2. I Miss: Bar None
    3. Goodbye Reed’s

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 12:04 pm     CandyFeatured NewsNewsComments (81)

    Candy Teases: Edition Two

    Mars has many new products in store for us in the coming months, most in the limited edition realm:

    imageName: Wildly Cherry M&Ms
    Brand: Mars
    Description: Cherry was rated the #1 fruit flavor by consumers in M&Ms brand research.
    Release Date: March 2008
    Notes: Wow, my “market research” revealed Strawberry to be the favorite red fruit flavor. (Of course I probably drive cherry fans away.)

    Name: Twizzlers Pull n Peel Cinnamon Fire Candy
    Brand: Hershey’s
    Description: You’ll be sizzling and twizzling
    Release Date: February 29, 2008
    Notes: I’m not sure they’ll get as much sizzle in there as I want (I find Twizzlers a little bland), but I’m certain to give them a whirl. (UPDATE: Here’s the review.)

    Name: Batman Reese’s Peanut Butter Bats in Dark Chocolate
    Brand: Hershey’s
    Description: Bat shaped Reese’s in dark chocolate (probably like the Reese’s Egg for Easter).
    Release Date: Summer 2008 (attached to the Batman: The Dark Knight premiere)
    Notes: People have been clamoring for the return of the dark chocolate Reese’s, so this seems like a good tie in.

    imageName: Indiana Jones Crispy Mint M&Ms
    Brand: Mars
    Description: Tie in with the new Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Crystal Skull ... they’ll have little skulls printed on them just like the Pirate Pearls
    Release Date: May 2008
    Notes: These could be interesting ... of course bringing back the original Crispy M&Ms would be more interesting. (UPDATED: Here’s the review.)

    Name: Snickers Adventure Bar
    Brand: Mars
    Description: a hint of chai and coconut in association with Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Crystal Skull
    Release Date: May 2008
    Notes: According to Brandweek the wrapper won’t say what the adventurous new flavors will be in this bar ... I think that’s too many flavors, but you know I’ll give it a whirl. (UPDATED: Here’s the review.)

    (All photos courtesy of the respective companies’ press kits.)

    Related Candies

    1. Candy Teases - New Products
    2. Snickers Shrek
    3. M&M Pirate Pearls

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 5:12 am     CandyNew Product AnnouncementFeatured NewsFun StuffNewsComments (15)

    Saturday, September 15, 2007

    This Week in Candy - Chicago Bound

    I’m busy packing and repacking today for my trip to Chicago to the All Candy Expo. Stop by all next week for daily coverage of what’s on the show floor, new products, things I spit out, and all the other insider info from the candy business.

    The most exciting thing is that there are going to be many candy and food bloggers attending. I’ll try to have roundups of that coverage as the week goes on but you can check out Candy Addict, Chicagoist and Metroblogging Chicago.

    In other global candy news, Bloomberg reports that the German chocolate market is saturated. So saturated that Germany is positively busting at the seams with great quality chocolate and will be forced to sell it to other countries. So expect to see more German chocolate in your local store.

    The story also quotes that Germans consume an average of 19.8 pounds each. Americans average only 12 pounds. I can see why we look like a tempting target.

    In other good news for dieters and diabetics, another report has confirmed that Aspartame (sold as

    Splenda

    Nutrasweet) is safe for use. Personally, I don’t care for the stuff, it nauseates me and gives me a headache. I don’t think otherwise healthy children should be given artificial sweeteners, because I think natural is best as children learn their eating habits for life. But it’s good to know that if you do eat it (whether on purpose or by accident) that it’s safer than previously thought.

    If my week in review isn’t enough for you, check out the Wandering Eater’s week in review ... be sure to scroll down to the awesome photos and descriptions of the Christopher Norman shop.

    This week in review:

    Monday: Candy Corn Kisses (4 out of 10)

    Tuesday: Lake Champlain Organic Dark Bars (8 out of 10 & 9 out of 10)

    Wednesday: Frey Supreme White, Lemon & Lime and Lemon & Pepper (6 out of 10)

    Thursday: Walkers Nonsuch Toffee Original & Treacle (8 out of 10 & 9 out of 10)

    Friday: M&Ms Razzberry - Limited Edition (4 out of 10)

    Average for this week: 6.86 with 43% chocolate content.

    Related Candies

    1. This Week in Candy - Naturally!
    2. This Week in Candy - Too Hot
    3. This Week in Candy - The Vacation
    4. This Week in Candy - A Giant Craving
    5. This Week in Candy - Elvis is in the Cupcake!

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 2:33 pm     CandyFeatured NewsFun StuffNewsComments (3)

    Monday, September 10, 2007

    Satisfying Treats for Parents & Kids: All Natural

    Many parents have suspected for a long time that candy may contribute to hyperactivity in children. While sugar has been exonerated, it appears that the problem may be with preservatives and artificial colors.

    I pulled together a list of candies which parents may want to consider when eliminating those elements from their diet, after all, kids deserve to be, well, kids. This is not a complete list of all natural candies, just a little something for now if you were wondering. I’ll pull something more complete together for Halloween.

    Gummis & Fruit Sours
    Katjes YogurtKatjes Tropical Gummis & Yogurt Gums
    Jelly Belly All Natural Jelly Beans
    St. Claire’s Organic Mints & Tarts
    Organic Surf Sweets (Gummis, Fruity Bears & Jelly Beans)
    Florida’s Naturals Sour Strings

    Hard Candies
    Pure Fun Hard CandiesCollege Farm (Lollipops & Hard Candies)
    Yummy Earth (Lollipops & Hard Candies)
    Pure Fun (Cotton Candy & Hard Candies)

    Chocolate
    Most chocolate is all natural, except for the artificial flavor vanillin which is present in Hershey’s, Nestle, Mars, Palmer’s, World’s Finest and others. Some candy bars, however, contain additional preservatives such as Sodium Benzoate, TBHQ or BHA and Potassium Sorbate. So read labels carefully. Generally, stay away from colorful candy coatings to reduce the likelihood of running ot problematic chemicals.

    Thompson All Natural ChocolateNestle Smarties (from the UK)
    Sun Drops
    Thompson Organics & All Natural Line
    Endangered Species Chocolate
    Equal ExchangeEqual Exchange (Fair Trade & Organic)
    Green & Black’s (Fair Trade & Organic)
    Guittard
    Dagoba
    Terra Nostra (Dairy Free “Milk” Chocolate & other organic goodies)
    Theo

    Black Ace LicoriceLicorice
    Black Ace Licorice
    Panda Bars

    Gum & Mints
    Glee
    Anis de Flavigny
    vermints-wintermintVerMints
    St. Claire’s Organic Mints & Tarts

    In most cases, I don’t miss the unnatural elements. Yes, the colors might not be as bright, but the flavors are usually the same or better. Without preservatives you have to get fresh candy. But that’s what you wanted anyway, right?

    What’s your favorite all natural candy?

    Related Candies

    1. This Week in Candy - Naturally!
    2. Green Halloween Final Thoughts
    3. Green Halloween

    POSTED BY Cybele AT 1:19 pm     CandyFeatured NewsFun StuffNewsComments (0)

    Page 4 of 29 pages ‹ First  < 2 3 4 5 6 >  Last ›

    Meticulously photographed and documented reviews of candy from around the world. And the occasional other sweet adventures. Open your mouth, expand your mind.

     

     

     

     

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    COUNTDOWN

    Candy Season Ends (Easter)

    0 days

     

     

     

    Which seasonal candy selection do you prefer?

    Choose one or more:

    •   Halloween
    •   Christmas
    •   Valentine's Day
    •   Easter

     

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    ON DECK

    These candies will be reviewed shortly:

    • Patric Chocolate

    • Amano Chocolates

    • Candy Rant: Stimulants are not Energy

    • Candy Encyclopedia: The Difference Between Gummi and Jelly

    • Candy Rant: If your Licorice isn’t black, it isn’t Licorice

     

     

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