Archive for the ‘Trends’ Category

Wedding season is in full bloom—and magnified by the April 29 Royal Wedding.

Word on the bridal beat is that the “it” color for weddings is regal purple. According to TheKnot.com’s recently released 2010 wedding survey, purple was selected by 1 out of 5 brides (21%) for their wedding—up 50% since 2008. Losing popularity with brides is brown, which apparently plummeted 16% last year.

Colored Sixlets are one of Candy.com's most popular wedding candies.

Since purple (especially lavender) is such a hot wedding color and 14% of brides in the TheKnot.com’s survey said they had a candy buffet at their 2010 wedding, I put together a “Purplicious” board at Pinterest.com and filled it with a range of purple candies (see my attempt at a reproduction below).

Perhaps the young royal couple will see the Pinterest board and be inspired to treat their wedding guests to a candy buffet outfitted with All-Natural Lavender Honey Tea Spoons. Purple honey spoons could be the perfect accompaniment to the rumored royal fruitcake. :)

(Click on photos below for product details and to see Candy.com’s entire purple candy collection.)

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11 Mar

Sweet Flavor Trends 2011 0

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Contest Update: The winner of the $25 Candy.com gift certificate is Michele Clark Powell! Michele answered the question posted below, “What NEW jelly bean flavor would you like to see made?” with “Potato Chip.” Congrats Michele and thanks to all who participated!
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Flavor trends in the sweets arena are fascinating and fickle. Last year at the Sweets & Snacks show in Chicago, honey, bacon, and coconut had the press talking and manufacturers making. Coconut is apparently still hot as Mars will be launching its Limited Edition Coconut Twix next month right before Easter madness. Not sure of bacon’s confectionery future.

(As a side note, check out LAWeekly’s Top 10 Kit Kat Flavors You’ve Probably Never Tried. No sign of honey, bacon, or coconut in these Kit Kats.)

Bell Flavors & Fragrances, one of the big flavor development houses, released its Top 10 Sweet Flavors in 2011, which does include a variation of coconut. Bell says its sweet list is based on its customer requests over a 12-month period, trend scouting, and outside research resources like Mintel.

1. Chocolate Soufflé
2. Honey Vanilla
3. Red Velvet
4. Caramel Macchiato (I’m surprised about this one. It seems so Starbucks 1999.)
5. Yumberry (Had to look this one up. It’s a real fruit grown mainly in China. It’s pretty, but apparently pretty tart.)
6. Coconut Crème
7. Sweet Potato
8. Ginger Peach
9. Mint Citrus
10. French Toast

I don’t know if I’d eat a Sweet Potato gummy bear, French Toast Tic Tac, or a Yumberry jelly bean, but I might have said that of pomegranate six years ago.

Yumberries

With all this flavor talk, I’ve got a good Friday contest idea. Answer the following question after this post or on Facebook or Twitter and you’ll automatically be entered to win $25 Candy.com gift certificate. Here goes:

What NEW jelly bean flavor would you like to see made?

I personally would like to see Brown Sugar, Banana Fudge, or Nutella. Go wild with your imagination! If you need  inspiration, take a peek at Jelly Belly’s official 50 flavors.

I’ll announce the random winner on Monday after a nice, long short daylight-savings weekend. Have a good one!

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There has been quite a bit of talk on Twitter and the food blogs this week over the classic combination of peppermint and chocolate.

Slashfood came out with a slide show of The Best Peppermint Treats. (Spoiler alert: Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark Squares, Dove Peppermint Bark Promises, and Hershey’s Candy Cane Kisses made the cut.)

Cybele May of CandyBlog.net just gave Russell Stover’s Peppermint Bark Snowman a favorable review.

Today on MarthaStewart.com, editor Amy Conway, posts a super-simple Candy Cane Ice Cream Sandwich made with crushed candy canes and chocolate wafers.

This all makes me wonder …

What’s your favorite Peppermint-Chocolate Treat?

Is it …

- Ghirardelli Peppermint Bark Squares

- Dove Peppermint Promises

- Hershey’s Candy Cane Kisses

- York Peppermint Patties

- Andes Mints (did you know Andes Mints are now available as baking chips? I just spied them at Target!)

- Junior Mints (must see heart-shaped Junior Mints!)

- Williams-Sonoma’s Peppermint Bark

- Trader Joe’s Candy Cane Joe-Joe’s

… or something else?

Name your peppermint-chocolate poison after this post or on Facebook. Mine? Dove’s Peppermint Bark Promises. One bite, tons of choco-pepperminty bark.

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Now here’s an interesting holiday fact from the National Confectioners Association (NCA):

“When eating candy canes, boys are almost twice as likely to crunch their candy canes than girls.”

Intrigued by this gender mind bender, I decided to do a little candy cane consumption testing of my own. Yesterday, my two children came home after school and I presented them each with a candy cane. They looked at me like I had 10 heads since it’s early November and candy canes aren’t typical after-school fare.

I watched with a careful eye as they consumed their canes while muddling through homework. And sure enough, my son crunched his immediately and my daughter took her sweet time to create a super-sharp point on the straight end to poke her brother. Little devil.

Crunch or no crunch aside, candy canes do have a huge fan base. The NCA reports that more than 1.8 billion candy canes will be made for the winter holiday season in traditional peppermint flavor as well as non-traditional flavors like super-sour, fruit, and tropical fruit.

Based on the number of newcomer brands to the candy cane category like Jolly Rancher, Now & Later, Sour Patch, Bubblicious, Jelly Belly, Cinnabon (yes, Cinnabon), etc., I would venture to guess that the 1.8 billion figure won’t be shrinking anytime soon.

Even so, I am traditionalist. Only peppermint candy canes for me this holiday season, and I’ll savor them to a nice, sharp point.

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