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Arts and Crafts

Monday, July 30, 2012

Candy Wrapper History

Candy, sweetmeat, or confectionery, no matter how it is referred to, has not always been sold as neatly wrapped as it is nowadays.

Before the introduction of sugar, sweet treats were made with honey and often, but not always, stored and sold in earthenware pots and wooden boxes.

Displaying and preserving them in glass jars became more common in the late 18th and throughout the first half of the 19th century. Around 1850, the tin can made its entrance, but candy was still rather expensive and mainly bought by the rich.

The introduction of sugar opened up an entire world for creating all kinds of candy and those were usually unwrapped and exposed to air, humidity, dust, insects, germs, grease, and odors.

To preserve the aroma, flavor and shelf-life and making it easier to sell, scraps of paper were used to wrap around the sugary treats, or to make cones to hold the candies. The very first, real candy wrapper was introduced during Christmas in the late 1840s.

In the beginning of the early 1900s, mainly toffees, gum, some stick candy and the 'nickel bar' Hershey's chocolate were individually wrapped, but that changed completely after the polio outbreak in 1916, when packaging requirements were made to eliminate the spreading of diseases.

This also led to the discovery by the manufacturers that packaged candy sold better and was a great means to advertise and appeal to the consumers.

The wrappers have become more and more colorful and in case you didn't know it; there is even a Candy Wrapper Museum online where you can see how the wrappers have evolved over the years.

Be warned though; it may bring back some 'sweet' memories!

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