Candy corn is a type of small, pyramid-shaped candy, typically divided into three sections of different colors, with a waxy texture and a flavor based on honey, sugar, butter, and vanilla. It is a staple candy of the fall season and the Halloween holiday in North America.
Candy corn’s traditional colors of yellow, orange, and white represent the colors of the fall harvest, or of corn on the cob, with the wide yellow end resembling a corn kernel.
Candy corn has a reputation for generating polarizing responses, with articles referring to it as “Halloween’s most contentious sweet” which people either “love” or “hate.”
“Chicken Feed” was the original name of the candy with production starting in the late 1880s. It was first invented in the 1880s by a Wunderle Candy Company employee, George Renninger. Wunderle Candy Company was the first to produce the candy in 1888.The Goelitz Confectionery Company (now called Jelly Belly) began manufacturing the product in 1898. While Jelly Belly still makes candy corn, the largest manufacturer of candy corn is Brach’s Confections owned by the Ferrara Candy Company. Brach’s makes approximately 7 billion pieces of candy corn per year and possesses 85 percent of the total share of the candy corn industry during the Halloween season.
Along with other agriculture-inspired treats at the time in the late 19th century, America’s confectioners sought to market candy corn to a largely rural society. During the late 19th century, “butter cream” candies molded into many types of nature inspired shapes, including chestnuts, turnips, and clover leaves were quite popular but what made candy corn stand out was its bright and iconic tri-color layering.
Although it is currently most popular in the fall, candy corn was not always associated with the fall and Halloween season. For the first half of the 20th century, candy corn was a well-known “penny candy” or bulk confectionery, and it was advertised as an affordable and popular treat that could be eaten year-round.
Candy corn developed into a fall and Halloween staple around the 1950s when people began to hand out individually wrapped candy to trick-or-treaters. The harvest-themed colors and increased advertising in October also helped candy corn become a fall staple.
The National Confectioners Association has deemed October 30, the day before Halloween, “National Candy Corn Day.”
Info and Image from Wikipedia