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Sunday, April 22, 2012

If you're traveling to Singapore, leave your chewing gum at home. It's not welcome in that country, mostly because people were sticking their chewed gum on public buses, on the street, and under chairs.  It was a real problem when some unruly passengers put their chewed gum on the door sensors of the trains, causing massive travel disruption. A chewing gum ban was enacted in 1992, revised in 2004, and then again in 2010. Since 2004, only gum that has a therapeutic use, such as for dental health, is allowed.

 After the ban was announced, it was no longer possible to import gum. Stores that had a stock pile of it were able to sell it without any penalty. After the ban went into effect, anyone caught with it would be publicly "named and shamed." Avid gum chewers would travel to neighboring Malaysia where they could freely buy it, as there was no black market for it in Singapore. 

In 1999, President Clinton and Singapore Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong met for a bilateral free trade agreement called the United States – Singapore Free Trade Agreement. The negotiations lasted well into 2003 when George Bush became president. Two issues were still being discussed: the Iraq War and chewing gum.  The Wrigley Company had a vested interest in Singapore lifting their ban on gum, so they enlisted a lobbyist to help with the negotiations.  As of 2010, Singapore has stuck to its 18 year ban on the import and sale of chewing gum. It has become an international symbol of the city-state's image as a squeaky clean strict society.


by: Woodstock Candy

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Candy Buttons on Paper are those tiny little colored dots of hardened sugar found in neat rows on a strip of paper. Each strip is 11" long by 2" wide with approximately 48 buttons on each. When I was kid, the candy store lady would cut a length off of the spool for us. They were probably sold by the foot back then. Today things are more sanitary, so they don't come on a roll anymore. They come from the manufacturer in strips either wrapped or unwrapped in a bulk pack.

The pink dots are cherry flavored, the blue are lime, and the yellow are lemon. A lot of the time the colored dots blend into each other, also causing the flavors to mix together. Most of the time, along with the candy you'll get a tiny piece of paper in your mouth, too. This is all part of the Candy Button experience. You'd think after all these years, NECCO would find a way to not have the paper stick to the candy, but maybe they just don't want to ruin the experience that we're all so familiar with. Candy Buttons are a true nostalgic candy, and for this reason, a pack is included in all of our retro candy boxes.


by: Woodstock Candy

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Thursday, April 12, 2012

April 12 is National Licorice Day. For thousands of years, it's been used in food and as a medicine. As a complimentary medicine, it's used to treat the common cold, as well as stomach ulcers. Too much licorice can be toxic to the liver or cause high blood pressure.

Most people are familiar with licorice as a candy. Licorice tea is also popular, and its root contains a compound that's almost fifty times sweeter than sugar. The licorice extract used in flavoring is produced by boiling the plant's long fibrous woody root system and evaporating most of the water, and using what is left in a syrup form.


In the United States, it's the candy such as Twizzlers, Red Vines, Good & Plenty, Black Licorice Pipes, Laces, Wheels, and Allsorts that are in the mainstream. In Europe, licorice can range from sweet, lightly salty, medium salty, to double salty, and can be soft and chewy to hard and brittle. Pontefract Cakes, Kokindjes, Schoolkrijt, and Zoute Knoopjes are just a few of the popular varieties. The Dutch have the highest per capita consumption of licorice in the world at almost 4 1/2 pounds per person per year. Some of their stores are devoted just to licorice. They probably don't need to have a National Licorice Day to promote the stuff; every day is Licorice Day for them.


by: Woodstock Candy

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