Archive for the ‘Skittles’ Category

Have you ever wondered why it is that when you buy a box or bag of candy containing an assortment of flavors/colors (i.e., Skittles, Dum Dum Pops, gummy bears, salt water taffy, etc.), the ratio of your least favorite flavor/color to favorite seems like 10:1?

For example, when I smuggle in a box of Dots at the movie theater, I feel like I’m eating 10 lime Dots for every cherry.

Dots CandySince it was a slow Saturday afternoon at the Gillerlain corral, I decided to test Murphy’s Law.

I picked up two of each of the following candies: Jujyfruits by Farley’s & Sathers Candy Company (7.8-ounce box); Starburst by Mars Snackfood US (4-ounce box); and Chewy Spree by Wonka (1.7-ounce bag).

I dumped out the candy and started sorting by flavor/color. After much computation (I’m still not using my college calculus), here are my key findings:

Starburst Fruit Chews

- None of the boxes/bags of candies had a uniform number of flavors/colors. (In the photo above, the Starburst box on the left contained seven strawberry pink pieces, the other had two. One bag of Chewy Spree held four cherry red pieces, the other had seven.)

- When comparing like candies, no two boxes/bags had an equal number of pieces. (One box of Jujyfruits contained 80 pieces, the other had 75 pieces.)

- It is possible to strike gold. One of my boxes of Jujyfruits harvested 30 cherry red pieces and only 11 lime greens.

Based on my mind-numbing experiment, it appears to be luck of the draw as to which specific flavors/colors you’re going to get in any one container of candy. And, if weight has everything to do with the number of candy pieces per box or bag, some pieces must be smaller than others.

Bottom line: If you’re smuggling candy into a dark theater, bring a tiny flashlight to navigate around unfavorable flavors and colors. Better yet, smuggle in two boxes for better odds … or bring on the Goobers.

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Gulp. Right after Thanksgiving dinner at my house, I’m going to let all of the junior guests create gingerbread cottages.

I say “cottages” because I’m going to hot glue graham crackers together ahead of time, and if you’ve ever done it, it’s easiest to keep the structure modest: four short walls and one roof. Besides, McMansions are so 2002.

I’ve got green, white, and chocolate frosting at the ready along with Dots, Twizzlers, mini candy canes, holiday M&M’s, Skittles, Hershey Candy Kane Kisses, mini marshmallows, sprinkles, Peeps snowman, and Peeps Christmas trees.

Am I missing any items you’ve found successful in the construction/decoration of gingerbread houses?

I think I may need Tootsie Roll Midgees and cherry fruit rolls for campfires outside each cottage.

I plan on a follow-up blog post to show you the finished products, let you know which candies worked best for the build outs, and any interesting home decor/exterior items the kids dreamed up during construction.

In the meantime, please do send me any tips for creating killer gingerbread houses. I’m all ears!

(Speaking of tips, I recently came across the book No Bake Gingerbread Houses for Kids, which has some great examples of gingerbread houses constructed out of graham crackers, cookies, ice cream cones, and waffle bowls. Another good resource is Martha Stewart’s photo gallery of no-bake gingerbread houses and cookie cottages.)

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

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My grandmother, like most, had a candy dish sitting in her “front room” (a.k.a. the least lived-in room). I don’t recall ever wanting any of the candies she put in her candy dish. Maybe it’s because they were dusty and not M&M’s, but I can’t remember, exactly.

Even so, I still have a thing for the old-fashioned candy dish. I’d love to have one today in my “family room” (a.k.a. the room with the couch my kids use as a launching pad) filled with Peanut Butter M&M’s, Nerds, or Crazy Core Skittles.

I know I’m not alone in this dish nostalgia. Former lawyer and Harvard grad, Maggie Wickes moved West and launched her Colorado-based Bluebird Candy Dish Co. this time last year out of concern for the extinction of the vintage candy dish. All of the dishes in Maggie’s collection are new and many of the vintage-inspired candy dish options incorporate classic glassware patterns.

My two favorites at Bluebird:

I also found some pretty terrific candy dishes at Etsy.com—all of which could double as heartfelt holiday gifts filled with vibrant holiday candies. (Click on each photo below for product info.)


Here’s an additional gem from 1StopRetroShop.com


Do you have fond memories of your grandmother’s candy dish?

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Last week, a friend told me that Skittles has more than 8 million Facebook fans. I checked this Saturday, and sure enough, Skittles has 8,682,144 friends. When I checked again last night, Skittles was up to 8,727,245 friends. That’s 45,101 friends joining the party in 48 hours.

Hmmmm. This made me wonder how many Facebook friends other top US candy brands have amassed … and what it would look like if I matched up the 25 best-selling candy brands in the US with each brand’s number of Facebook friends. My unscientific results may startle you.

Sales Rank*      Brand (Manufacturer)              Facebook Fans

25                       Ice Breakers (Hershey)              21,051

24                       Orbit White (Mars)                     566,854

23                       Dentyne Ice (Kraft)                     7,343 (Canada)

22                       Tic Tac (Ferrero)                         933,074

21                       Hershey’s Kisses (Hershey)       84,532

20                       Trident White (Kraft)                   (see Trident, No. 6 spot)

19                        Butterfinger (Nestle)                  527,262

18                        Milky Way (Mars)                       none found

17                        Starburst (Mars)                         3,971,587

16                        3 Musketeers (Mars)                  126, 713

15                        Dove (Mars)                               38,476

14                        Skittles (Mars)                            8,720,108

13                        Twizzlers (Hershey)                   54,829

12                        Twix (Mars)                                984,655

11                        Eclipse (Mars)                            none found

10                        Extra (Mars)                               95,879

9                          Kit Kat (Hershey)                       889,183

8                          Stride (Kraft)                              689,771

7                          5 (Mars)                                     1,462,127

6                          Trident (Kraft)                            329,249

5                          Orbit (Mars)                               566,851

4                          Snickers (Mars)                         596,860

3                          Hershey’s                                   1,014,925

2                          Reese’s PB Cups (Hershey’s)   3,515,716

1                          M&M’s (Mars)                            1,152,646

(*Sales Rank based on retail sales data from Symphony IRI Group, a Chicago-based market research firm for the 52 weeks that ended on Sept. 6, 2009. Data collected from supermarkets, drugstores, gas/C-stores and mass market retailers, excluding Walmart.)

Extrapolating from my “research,” Facebook friends and product sales don’t really correlate. Skittles is by far the most popular US candy brand on Facebook, but it’s not in the top 10 for sales. Tic Tac has close to 1 million friends, but the itty-bitty mints rank 22 out of 25 for sales. Even so, it’s interesting to see which brands are using Facebook as a major marketing platform, and which are not.

I am always a fan of the underdog, so if Mars does decide to create a Facebook page for Milk Way, I want to be the first BFF.

What candy brands have you “friended”?

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