by Marion Nestle

Currently browsing posts about: Candy

Jun 11 2018

“Functional” candy? Special report from Confectionary News

The industry newsletter ConfectionaryNews.com has a collection of articles on “functional” candy.  In this context, “functional” means the addition of something not originally present to enhance the food’s nutritional value.

In the U.S., confectioners have to be careful not to violate the FDA’s so-called “jelly bean rule,” one that says you cannot add nutrients to foods (like jelly beans) just to make them appear to be healthy.

But wouldn’t it be great if candy was a health food?  Spirulina chocolate?  Read on.

Special Edition: Functional Confectionery

The consumer trend towards better-for-you snacks gives confections made with functional ingredients an opportunity to scoop up their share in the health and wellness market.

As part of this special edition on Functional Confectionery, ConfectioneryNews talks to YouBar about its nutrition bars that meet individualized recipes for dietary and nutritional needs; Rainmaker which is currently testing its first line of branded protein confectionery products in the UK and Ireland; and Supertreats’ carob powder which is a healthy alternative to cocoa.

Dec 15 2017

In the holiday spirit: 3D printed candy!

ConfectionaryNews.com has collected articles and videos into a Special Edition: The future of 3D printing in confectionery

Hershey tips 3D printing to take off like the microwave oven did in the 80s – with ultra-customized designs a possibility in retail stores. Katjes subsidiary the Magic Candy Factory is already making waves with its 3D sugar confectionery printer, allowing personalized designs. Now others, such as Barry Callebaut, are entering the fray. This special explores what the future holds for 3D printing in the confectionery industry.

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Oct 31 2017

Happy Halloween!

In honor of today’s sugar rush, I know you want to know this.

From Clair Robins comes this interactive map of what she calculates as the most popular Halloween candy in each state.

Click on the state….  And note: virtual candy has no sugar or calories.

Source: CandyStore.com.

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Feb 14 2017

Happy (healthy?) Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

It’s a big day for candy sales.

Just for fun, I Googled “healthy Valentine’s Day” just to see what would come up.   Lots, it turns out.

Here’s my favorite.

Image result for valentine's day healthy candy

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Nov 14 2016

Candy politics: election-year style

Confectioners.com went into the Open Secrets database to take a look at how candy companies spent their campaign contributions.

Mondelez, which owns these brands of chocolates: Milka, Toblerone, Caramilk, Cadbury:

Hershey’s:

Open Secrets is at https://www.opensecrets.org/.  It’s worth learning how to use it so you can dig up sweet tidbits like these.

Oct 31 2016

Happy Halloween (or, as should be renamed, Candy Day)

Aren’t you happy that it’s that sweet, gooey time of year again?

Image result for halloween candy

As Julia Belluz of Vox points out

Candy and Halloween didn’t always go hand in hand.  It wasn’t until the 1950s that that candy industry started to push the stuff as a way to boost flagging fall sales.

 

The candy industry would love you to think:

Kids do love candy, as this marketing report tells us.  I’ll bet these favorites have everything to do with advertising budgets.

Does candy have a place in healthy diets?  Sure, but in very small and occasional amounts.

Good luck getting through tonight’s trick-or-treat.

Happy Halloween, everyone.

Sep 23 2015

The benefits of eating candy. Who knew?

This week’s sugar item #3

John Downs, the president of the National Confectioners Association has an editorial (note: sponsored) in Politico announcing the NCA’s new campaign to convince Americans of the benefits of eating candy.

Candy is a special treat that has played an important role in cultural traditions, seasonal celebrations and family occasions here in the U.S. and around the world. But some consumers might not know that there is much more that goes into this honest, affordable, fun and transparent treat.

What more?  The economic benefits, of course.  Here’s the Infographic:

The press release highlights the benefits.

The confectionery industry directly employs 55,000 people in the United States, and more than 400,000 jobs in agriculture, retail, transportation and other industries rely in part on the sale of confections for their livelihood.  For every job that is created in confectionery another seven are supported in related industries, which means that candy drives a multiplier effect of 1:7 or an impact of 700 percent.

Sugar?  Calories?  Tooth decay?  Obesity?

Never mind.

Apr 6 2015

Is SmartCandy smart policy?

I was surprised by FoodNavigator-USA’s story about “SmartCandy,”—a “vitamin-infused snack.

smart candy

Could the name and contents of this candy be violating the FDA’s “jelly bean” rule?

The “jelly bean” rule refers to FDA’s fortification policy,* which aims to discourage food and beverage makers from adding vitamins to “foods of minimal nutritional value” (a.k.a. junk foods) so they can be marketed as healthy.

The policy is explicit.  The FDA does not consider it appropriate to add nutrients to candies and beverages.

Here’s what the article says about what’s in it:

Smartcandy is formulated with a blend of Vitamin A for eye health, three B vitamins to support converting sugar and carbohydrates into sustained energy, and vitamin C for immunity. The trans fat-, high-fructose corn syrup-free candies come in four varieties: sweet and sour gummies; and Froot, a proprietary snack with a candy shell and a layer of yogurt encasing a strawberry or orange center.

Here’s the Nutrition Facts label (thanks to a reader for sending).

Here’s what the website says Orange Froot candy can do:

This is the visionary leader of the snacking world, it’s the one they listen to and admire. He can make a three point shot with his eyes closed, build the best fort you’ve ever seen, or solve an algebra question like it was a nursery rhyme, this flavor packed snack will push you to achieve anything!

If SmartCandy can get away with this, won’t Coca-Cola and Pepsi be next?

Candy is candy and has an place in kids’s diets—occasionally.  But a health food that makes kids do better in school?  I’d like to see the evidence for that.

FDA: take a look please.

*Thanks to Michael Jacobson for forwarding.

Update, April 13: The New York State Attorney General has filed a complaint.

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