Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Now & Later

Classic Now & LaterNow and Later were first introduced in 1962 with only three flavors by the Phoenix Candy Company. They were designed as an all-year-round candy, no problem eating these in the summer.

The little individually wrapped taffy squares start hard but become chewy. One of the original taglines for the candy was “Eat some now, save some for later.” (I remember the tune for the jingle, but nothing beyond those words.) They currently say, “Hard ‘n Fruity Now, Soft ‘n Chewy Later.”

The 18 piece classic bar features the flavors Strawberry, Grape and Lime. In some ways they resemble Starburst, since they are a fruit chew (they were introduced as Opal Fruits in 1960 in the UK) or Tangy Taffy which was sold in bars that you could whack and break into bite size pieces. (That’s now discontinued.)

Classic Now & LaterNow and Later have gone through a few different standard flavors and even a few owners. Phoenix Candy Company of Brooklyn, NY later sold out to Beatrice Foods (1978), who later sold their confectionery lines to Huhtamaki Oy of Finland (1983) which then turned around and sold it off in 1986 to a Finnish investment firm called Kouri Capital. They held onto it until 1992 when they sold it to Nabisco (who also held LifeSavers back then). Then it was sold to Kraft ... ultimately landing at Farley’s and Sathers in 2002. (Either people really love this candy or just don’t know what to do with it.)

Wikipedia has a fun list of all the flavors known to have existed. Even today, there are a lot of flavors of Now and Later, though I never see them in stores.

The most common format for the candy these days is either the pack shown here or in tubs of either mixed flavors or single flavors.

I ate a lot of these as a kid. They came in 5 cent packs (little stacks of the squares), so were easy to buy even when I had little money. But I gave up on them later as I got my permanent teeth. There was something anxiety-producing as I wasn’t disciplined enough to just let them soften in my mouth, I had to chew them while they were still hard and then anchor my jaw together.

Soft Now & Later and Classic Now & LaterGrape: was always my favorite in the Now and Later pantheon. Artificial through and through, it tastes like SweeTarts and ball point pen ink smells. Not terribly tangy, but still flavored to the very end and never gritty or grainy.

Lime: the neon green wax wrapper is matched by the neon green color of the candy. It’s very tangy and has the flavor of Lime Kool-Aid.

Strawberry: is a rich pink color. The flavor is at once like strawberry jam and those Italian strawberry hard candies that have the gooey filling. Tangy, fragrant, artificial and satisfying.

Now and Later don’t pretend to be healthy, there’s no real fruit juice in there, no detectable levels of vitamin C.

They can also be considered vegan, as they contain no animal products. (But do have soy, for those who might be sensitive and are processed on machinery that also handles eggs.)

Soft Now & Later and Classic Now & LaterA while back Farley’s & Sathers introduced Soft Now and Later, which seem to solve that problem most adults have with them.

Soft Now and Later are actually soft! They’re soft enough to bend while still in the wrapper.

A regular N&L is one inch square and a quarter of an inch high. The Soft N&L is one and a quarter inches square and a third of an inch high.

And they come in oodles of flavors. 

Soft Now & Laters

Grape: this was the only crossover flavor I had between the regular and soft. It has an identical flavor. The texture makes it a little less punchy at first, but after that it’s tangy and artificial to the very end.

Banana : insanely chemical, so much that it’s like inhaling fingernail polish remover. Sweet and chewy, not quite as good as Laffy Taffy, but darn close. Even though they’re pretty horrible, I love them more than any of the other flavors. (I can’t explain it any further, it’s kind of like circus peanuts.)

Vanilla: is a nice toasty cream color. It tastes extremely artificial, but pleasant, rather like toasted marshmallows. Much softer chew than Tootsie’s version.

Chocolate: it’s a glossy-rich red-brown. It doesn’t smell like much, and really doesn’t taste like it either. Kind of like a very sweet brownie batter. The chew is nice, but overall I’d probably go with Tootsie Rolls.

Watermelon: is a zap of summer in the mouth. At first it’s that fake watermelon scent, then it tastes more like real apple juice. Not at all what I expected, and fans of fake watermelon and Bonne Bell lipsmackers will probably be disappointed.

Apple is a really weird light green color, almost has a cast of blue to it that makes me think it might be minty. Nope, it’s pure green apple flavor.

Cherry looks exactly like the Watermelon out of the wrapper (maybe a smidge darker). It has an intense black cherry flavor, nicely tart and less medicinal than many cherry candies.

The fun thing about the Soft N&L is that they are soft enough for mash-ups. I took my vanilla and chocolate and twisted them together. (It didn’t really make them any better.) Then I twisted them in with some banana. (Still not really better, just fun.) I pushed some bits of the Watermelon and Apple together and it looked horrid and tasted even worse. (But there have to be good combos in there somewhere.)

As a soft taffy with intense flavors, these aren’t quite Starburst. However, they don’t have any gelatin in them (but do have egg whites, so they’re not suitable for vegans but fine for vegetarians).

Other reviews: Candy Addict, Wisconsin Candy Dish & Slashfood.

Related Candies

  1. Look! and Big Hunk
  2. Banana n Cream & Red Orange Mentos
  3. Tootsie Pop Drops
  4. Tootsie Rolls & Fruit Rolls
  5. Starburst
  6. Doscher’s French Chew Taffy
Name: Now and Later & Soft Now and Later
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Farley's and Sathers
Place Purchased: Rite Aid (Glendale) & samples from CandyWarehouse.com
Price: $.89 & $18 per tub
Size: 2.75 ounces & 57 ounces
Calories per ounce: 87
Categories: Chew, Mexico, Farley's and Sathers

POSTED BY Cybele AT 12:35 pm Tracker Pixel for Entry    

Comments
  1. These were absolutely popular on the military bases when I was a kid to the point that they were almost black marketed at school. What a flashback!

    Comment by Darlene on 7/01/08 at 1:17 pm #
  2. I’ve been a reader for quite some time… but this is my first post. I LOVE N&L;. I always have… they were one of my favorite candies as a kid. I specifically love the grape flavor as well. Can’t get enough of them when I see them. So glad to see this post!

    Comment by Tammy (BFW) on 7/01/08 at 2:11 pm #
  3. I ate quite a few of these as a kid, even though I didn’t really like them much.  They were too hard and I never cared for fruit chews in the first place.  But they were always the cheapest thing, and when I only had a dime, they were better than nothing!

    Comment by Alicia on 7/01/08 at 2:37 pm #
  4. Saved my butt in those early days of quitting smoking ! Even though my mouth had sores, I didn’t care- these helped distract me from wanting a cigarette.

    Comment by Laura on 7/02/08 at 3:31 pm #
  5. I loved these things! And I’m glad I’m not the only one who stopped buying them due to paranoid delusions about tearing my permanent teeth out…

    Comment by Kate on 7/02/08 at 4:50 pm #
  6. I was craving these just the other day…what a shock to see you had a post about Now and Laters. I remember eating them in Middle School. They were the popular choice in the school’s store. Thanks for the post!

    Comment by Trish on 7/03/08 at 2:56 pm #
  7. These are my favorite candy!

    Comment by Shannon on 7/05/08 at 5:39 am #
  8. am I the only one who grew up calling these “Now OR Laters” all as one word? nowrlater

    Comment by debe on 7/13/08 at 12:37 pm #
  9. I am chewing on some Watermelon Now and Laters? right now! This is my favorite candy of all time!!!

    I wouldn?t want the ?soft? ones, I like them hard and chewy.

    I remember ALL of the flavors since I was a kid in the 70?s. You got 7 fat pieces in each pack of one flavor for 10 cents a pack. I would buy a dollar?s worth. I have the mouth full of fillings (although my teeth are good looking, thanks to frequent dental visits as a child) to prove it.
    Chocolate
    Vanilla
    Grape
    Orange
    Banana
    Fruit Punch
    Apple
    Cherry
    Tropical Punch
    Pineapple
    Watermelon (my favorite)
    I think they had:
    Peach, and Lemon too. I may be thinking of the Jolly Rancher Sticks.
    That was so long ago, but I definitely remember the ones I posted in a list above.

    The new big packs, and the mixed flavors are all bootleg to me. I like the old school flavors, except for the Vanilla and Chocolate, those flavors are best left to ice cream and candy bars.

    Comment by Veronica on 7/18/08 at 3:37 pm #
  10. There’s a soft Now & Later, now??

    I must try one.

    Comment by Mike on 8/08/08 at 5:28 pm #
  11. Ah, my mouth remembers these! The special sour touch and that texture, man. Haven’t been able to bring myself to eat them for years due to fears about sticking my teeth together.

    Comment by CleanSimple on 9/24/08 at 12:58 pm #
  12. For those looking to buy Now & Later’s; CVS just added them to the front set a couple of months ago.  Also carried by Rite-Aid and Family Dollar.

    Comment by Marshall Craig on 10/15/08 at 12:55 am #
  13. Does anyone remember the cinnamon, hot ones? These were hotter than Charms Hot Blow Pops, but had a more cinnamony flavor.

    I used to eat those around 1971-73 when I lived in Baltimore. Wrote the company once and they said they never made them.

    Comment by Crystal on 3/10/09 at 9:12 am #
  14. What about the bubble gum flavored now and laters

    Comment by db on 7/07/09 at 4:11 pm #
  15. i remember cinnamon now and laters used to eat them when i was in junior high cant believe they say they never made them they were so good

    Comment by terry on 9/26/09 at 3:42 am #
  16. As a kid in the 70’s, my family and I, would put all different colors together on the heater until they got soft…than un-rap them all…stacking them on top over each other (at-lease 5 pieces at a time)and put em all in our mouth! When ever I see Now and Later’s…I think back on my awesome childhood! It’s funny how something as small as a piece of candy can do that! Thanks for the good times!

    Comment by Lisa Carter on 9/26/09 at 11:45 am #
  17. Oh these were my very favourite and still are. I grew up in California in the 80’s as a kid and I ate these almost every day. You could buy 10 packs for a dollar. No one on her mentioned the flavor Cola, Rainbow which was pink and yellow and the purple and green ones which were called mystery. They did not sell these in Canada which for a 10 year old was horrible. I just found them again not too long ago, but they are not the same to me. I loved that they would be hard to chew and they made your jaw hurt. I also liked how they would get hard and break like ice when you ate them with Coke. Ahhhhhh..I miss these! Oh I loved the Banana ones too!

    Comment by Kasey on 9/29/09 at 10:52 am #
  18. Hey - I remember the cinnamon ones too, as a matter of fact I logged onto this site in hopes of finding were I may purchase some.  sure hate to hear them deny they ever made them.  if anyone should fine some by another company please send me a email.  Thanks God Bless

    Comment by Angelia on 10/21/09 at 1:17 pm #
  19. Hey Kasey - Where did you find the old flavors ones?  Did they have the Cinnamon flavor?

    Comment by Angelia on 10/21/09 at 1:24 pm #
  20. I recently bought some Now and Laters at a dollar store in the Detroit area.  I got an assortment pack with grape, banana, strawberry, apple, cherry, peach, watermelon, and pineapple.

    Comment by trillian on 11/09/09 at 4:17 am #
  21. These Now or later things are nastyyyyy

    Comment by Annie on 11/10/09 at 2:47 pm #
  22. I remember eating the cinnamon now annd laters too! This is why I too came to this site in hopes of being able to specifically purchase that exact flavor. I was horrified to hear that the company denied ever making them when I know that was my flavor as a kid along with the apple and watermelon flavor! But I must admit I loved all the flavors but was truly fond of the cinnamon ones. I’m devastated by this news!

    Calvin Cherry

    Comment by Calvin Napoleon Cherry on 11/27/09 at 7:43 pm #
  23. These are not the real Now and Laters.  The real ones that cost a dime were much better because they were more hard, firm and less chewy like taffy they way these new school ones are.  I dont like the ones that they sell now but I loved the ones I used to buy as a kid in the 80’s

    Comment by sk on 1/21/10 at 11:09 pm #
  24. I love this candy.  I still eat them till this day, but I gotta say, my favorite was pineapple.  It was the best.  It’s too bad they don’t have this flavor anymore.  My sister used to get annoyed when I ate it because it emitted a sort of stench, which I never detected.  I also remember eating Bubble gum flavored Now & Later.  When I was a kid, and didn’t have much money, these always hit the spot.  They were cheap and always satisfied.

    Comment by Richard HO on 3/23/10 at 2:24 am #
  25. Hey I was a big Now&Later; fan till they changed the flavors.Can anyone tell me were I can find the BUTTER RUM there the best. HELP PLEASE

    Comment by David on 3/29/10 at 9:02 am #
  26. I too love the N&L when I was a kid I feel in love with the Cola, Rainbow, Vanilla, Chocolate, Watermelon. I hope that they would soon bring them back even if its just for a trial period of time.

    Comment by Shikita on 5/09/10 at 3:15 pm #
  27. Cinnamon was one of my favorites!!!! Used to get them from the local 7-11 on the way to church on sunday mornings in the late 1970’s and early 80’s.

    Hard to believe they said they never made em when I know for a fact they did. I’m surprised to find out they still make Vanilla and Chocolate. I had thought those got discontinued in the early 1980’s along with cinnamon flavor.

    Why is it all the good candy is no longer made? I want my cinnamon Now and laters and my marathon candy bar on shelves again.

    Comment by Paul on 7/18/10 at 9:24 pm #
  28. MMMmmm…just thinking about the cinnamon flavor now and later bring back sweet memories from the 70’s.  Just talking about this particular flavor last night with friends…can’t believe they say they never made this flavor.  Someone at the company needs to check the archives as I am sure I am not having a senior moment (relapse of memory) LOL.

    Comment by Bridgette on 8/01/10 at 9:15 am #
  29. if u don’t mention flavors such as thriller or mystery mix then you are not true now and later fans. although watermelon orange pineapple and the origanal flavors are good as well. i use to buy them by the case which was 48 packs break them down and sell them at school for 50 cent a pack.those where the good days

    Comment by pete nice on 11/29/10 at 6:03 pm #
  30. Sorry Now & Later fans. I believe the Butter Rum, Cinnamon, Bubble Gum, Chocolate (in the regular-unsoft version)Thriller, Rainbow, and Mystery Mix were all discontinued.
    Mmmm mystery mix. Does anyone remember what the flavors were? Or is it a mystery?

    Comment by Val on 1/10/11 at 6:07 pm #
  31. hi im a big fan when i was a kid in new jersey in the 1970’s the was a now and later called fat alberts is it possible to still get them

    Comment by curtis davis on 2/25/11 at 10:20 pm #
  32. F&S does not make any candy that has a name of Fat Albert. I honestly don’t remember this kind of Now & Later.
    Were they larger in size? F&S does make a Giant Now and Later. The best way to get those in your area is to order them online. Google ‘Now and Later Giant’ and I’m sure you’ll find someone selling them.

    Comment by Val on 2/27/11 at 10:52 am #
  33. I remember eating these in a movie theater once when I was little… As was normal, chewed them and my jaw stuck together. Heard a really weird noise when I pulled my jaw open but didn’t think much of it.

    Until about five seconds later when I realized there was something distinctly hard and… Crunchy??? In my Now and Later.

    And five seconds after that, I was very disturbed that my apple Now and Later had mysteriously turned into the long taboo BLOOD flavor.

    Yep. Ripped my baby tooth right out of my skull. I can still feel myself chewing on my own crunchy tooth wrapped in apple and blood flavored taffy.

    I, ah, haven’t really been inclined to eat a Now and Later since.

    Comment by Wonder Taco on 2/28/11 at 9:36 am #
  34. Where can i get bubble gum flavor N&L, these where my absolute favorites as a child and still are now as an adult.. Help me find them

    Comment by Yary on 4/05/11 at 1:38 pm #
  35. They definitely made cinnamon. I use to buy them for $.10/pack as a kid at the local gas station. I’ve been searching for this flavor again for a minute…can’t find them anywhere.

    Comment by TC on 6/22/11 at 10:29 am #
  36. I really need to find chocolate now and laters!  Help!!!

    Comment by Melissa on 11/30/11 at 6:01 pm #
  37. just finished a pack,and wanted to know how to make them, then ended up on this.I want another pack,so imma ask my sister to buy some .OH and they put a nice big bag of now and laters at JCPenny outlet for $1.99

    Comment by modelynte on 12/20/11 at 11:53 am #
  38. I recall (either late 80s or early 90s) that the candy had a powerfully good scent when on the candy rack and if you bought a Hershy’s chocolate bar that was nearby, it would have a Now and Later flavor. Now the candy has no scent and a weak flavor. I think that the candy was changed because of chocolate absorbing the flavor.

    Comment by bill on 2/13/12 at 8:56 am #
  39. Tropical Fruit Punch is my favorite smile I can put 10 of them in my mouth at once

    Comment by Markiss on 3/05/12 at 4:40 pm #
  40. Bring back the mystery mix now laters please

    Comment by jones on 6/30/12 at 3:26 pm #
  41. I wish they would bring back the mystery mix kind

    Comment by jones on 6/30/12 at 3:32 pm #
  42. Have they discontinued the sour apple hard now & laters. We. Bought a pack that had replaced the sour apple for blue raspberry. My husband loves the sour apple. I hope they aren’t gone?

    Comment by joy on 7/11/12 at 2:27 pm #
  43. I would like to thank everyone who remembers the cinnamon flavor Now & Later. I could remember buying it as a little girl in Chicago. I emailed F&S about a year ago requesting for this Now & Later. I was told that it was unpopular that why it is no longer available.

    Comment by Zorrie on 9/03/12 at 5:49 am #
  44. i am so upset why did u stop makin the single ones, i cannot find them no where. i love the banana ones. i need them. where can i purchase them from in phila.pa

    Comment by DENISE ADAMSON on 9/11/12 at 1:07 pm #
  45. I love the noe and later candy why their don,t make the chocolate. One now can you tell me where I can find them or how I can bye them on online.im from n.j n.c live now

    Comment by gloria floyd on 10/07/12 at 11:53 am #
  46. What about THRILLER?! For the top GRILLER?

    Comment by Pigthimble on 10/20/12 at 11:12 am #
  47. I’ve been eating N&L since I was a lil
    Girl in the70s. Butter Rum(discontinue I’m sure)and Pineapple are my fave

    Comment by kimberly on 2/12/13 at 12:21 pm #
  48. Yes I agree with a lot of you back in the 70s & 80
    N&L were absolutely the bomb then at 5 to 10 cents a pack they had all those flavors that’s mentioned but don’t make anymore since the Original Company not behind these remake copies that will do for now. The Big singles ones can be purchased @ a candy wholesale store in CHICAGO

    Comment by kimberly on 2/12/13 at 12:38 pm #
  49. I used to LOVE N&Ls;, one of my favorite candies ever! I loved letting them soften in my mouth as I enjoyed the (totally artificial) flavors. However they’re now labeled as “New Softer” which is just so wrong, especially if a softer version already exists. These days they’re simply “Now"s and feel like a totally different candy. Please bring back the original LATERs!!!

    Comment by JLawrence on 3/25/13 at 8:08 am #
  50. I am so happy to see that my sister and I are not the only two people that remember the cinnamon. We used to buy them at a little mart called Tuckers, in Bowling Green, KY.  When I mention it people look at me like I am crazy! They were so buttery and cinnamony good! They are crazy to say they never made them. I mean look how many people remember them. Maybe if enough of us contact them they would consider bringing them back.

    Comment by Beth on 6/10/13 at 10:33 am #
  51. I miss the Orange now @ laters.heard they where discontinued? Why? I’m lost without them.CRAZY for orange in allentown.

    Comment by dean mickey on 1/14/14 at 5:21 am #
  52. I would really like have a chocolate & vanilla now & layers, is there anywhere I can purchase some.

    Comment by Wanda Hicks on 3/25/14 at 2:50 pm #
  53. Are they still making the classic Now and Laters?  I can’t find them anymore.

    Comment by Cris on 7/11/14 at 11:14 am #
  54. Bring back the sour apple ones the best Ever!!!!!! And they were waaayyy juicier they don’t taste like they did in the70s

    Comment by Joyce brimage on 9/09/14 at 5:24 pm #
  55. I remember eating now n laters as a kid.They were delicious and very affordable.My favorite flavor was butter rum.I also loved vanilla flavor.Does anybody know if they still sell these flavors?Please help my children think I’m crazy cause they have never heard of these flavors?

    Comment by cynthia collazo on 10/13/14 at 7:58 am #
  56. I remember eating these (the real ones) as a child…I LOVED Lemon, Orange, Butter Rum, Cinnamon, Bubble Gum, Grape and Strawberry….sure wish they still had them…and I actuallyliked the Vanilla better than the Chocolate.

    Comment by Rose on 12/12/14 at 12:03 pm #

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