NATIONAL CANDY DAY
Enthusiastically each year on November 4, people of all ages celebrate National Candy Day.
Candies come in numerous colors, shapes, sizes and varieties and have a long history in popular culture.
It was in the late 13th century that the Middle English word candy began to be used, coming into English from the Old French cucre candi, derived in turn from Persian Qand and Qandi, “cane sugar”.
People use candy as a broad category that includes candy bars, chocolates, licorice, sour candies, salty candies, tart candies, hard candies, taffies, gumdrops, marshmallows and much more.
Way back in time, before sugar was readily available, candy was made from honey. The honey was used to coat fruits and flowers to preserve them or to create forms of candy. There is still candy that is served in this form today but it is typically seen as a garnish.
Originally a form of medicine, candy was used to calm the digestive system or cool a sore throat. At this time, it began as a combination of spices and sugar and appeared only on the tables of the wealthy.
It was in the 18th century that the first candy is to believed to have come to America from Britain and France. The simplest form of candy, at that time, was Rock Candy which was made from crystallized sugar, however, even the basic form of sugar was considered a luxury and was only attainable by the rich.
* Since 1979, the world has produced more sugar than can be sold, making it very attainable and cheap. *
When the technological advances and the availability of sugar opened up the market in the 1830′s, the candy business underwent a drastic change. Candy now was not only for the enjoyment of the rich but for the pleasure of everyone. Penny candies became popular, targeting children.
- 1847 – Invention of the candy press making it possible to produce multiple shapes and sized of candy at one time.
- 1851 – Confectioners began using a revolving steam pan to assist in boiling sugar.
The two top selling candies in America have been:
- M & M’S — M&M’s are milk chocolate drops with a colorful candy coating on the outside. The candies were first manufactured in 1941 and were given to American soldiers serving in the Second World War. M&M’s are manufactured by Mars Inc.
- REESES’S PEANUT BUTTER CUPS — Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are round chocolate disks that are filled with a sweet, creamy peanut butter filling. The cups were first manufactured in 1928 by the Hershey’s company.
Within our research, we were unable to find the creator of National Candy Day, an “unofficial” national holiday.