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Share a Picture of Your Carved Pumpkin with Us and You Could Win!

It likely goes without saying that the team here at Blair Candy loves Halloween. It’s one of the most fun candy holidays, it makes kids happy, we get to see an awesome array of cute, clever and creepy costumes, and it occurs during the most beautiful season in Pennsylvania, home to Blair Candy. We also love Halloween because of those plump pumpkins that pop up everywhere from the grocery store to roadside stands, beckoning us to buy ‘just one more’! Some might say I have a pumpkin problem, but I don’t think it’s a problem at all. Pumpkins make me happy, so I’d say I have a pumpkin solution!

Because I love everything about pumpkins – their color, shape, carving them, using their sweet insides in pie and roasting their seeds! – I’m hoping you’ll take part in our Pumpkin Carving Photo Contest. Our contest began on October 22, 2012 and runs through October 29, 2012. All you have to do to enter is send a photo of your creatively carved pumpkin to contest@blaircandy.com. We’ll upload your photo to the Blair Candy Facebook page, and everyone will get to enjoy in the festive fun. We’re already seeing some outstanding entries, including those in the images above!

So, you’re probably wondering what you can win, aside from all the ghoulish glory. Bragging rights are delicious, but they aren’t as tasty as candy! And because of that the First Place Winner will receive a $100 Gift Certificate to BlairCandy.com, and the Second Place Winner a $50 Gift Certificate to BlairCandy.com. Pretty sweet, right? Sweet as pumpkin pie!

Grab your carving tools and camera! And thanks in advance for sharing your pumpkins with us and making the ‘spirit’ of the season a happy one 🙂

Weight Watchers + Candy = Yes You Can! Part Two…

With Weight Watchers simple but oh-so-smart points system, it’s possible to fit just about anything you can think of into your diet, with the focus being as much on the item itself as the portion and frequency with which you eat it. For those that have been using the Weight Watchers system for awhile, calculating points becomes second nature, as does knowing how many points their favorite foods are valued at.

Something a friend of mine mentioned keeping tabs of as well is a snack list of what she calls ‘point fillers’. These are foods that only carry a value of 3 points or less – foods she can easily enjoy at the end of the day if she has saved a few points for such a purpose, or finds that she has a few to spare. And her list just happens to have quite a bit of candy on it, which excited me to say the least! I was thrilled to hear she’s still able to enjoy some sweet favorites without making too many concessions the rest of the day. As for the candy she eats most often? Chocolate Tootsie Pops. At just 60 calories a pop, and one point apiece, she can eat one just about every day of the week. Pretty sweet, huh?

Inspired by my candy-loving friend, we will be sharing other candy ideas for all of you that are following the Weight Watchers plan as well. Keep an eye on the Blair Candy Twitter and Blair Candy Facebook for candy favorites and their respective point value. We’ll be keeping the focus on candies that would fit on my friend’s list of ‘point fillers’ – candies that won’t ‘eat up’ a lot of your points, but will satisfy your craving and make eating smarter all the sweeter!

Weight Watchers + Candy = Yes You Can! Part One…

Whether we tried to lose a few pounds in a pinch for a special occasion, or we have struggled with losing weight for many years, at some point in time most of us have at least dabbled in dieting. Some of those diets are stranger than others, and some are downright dangerous. But luckily, others are created to be a long term, beneficial change in the way we eat; to not be a ‘diet’ in the sense of an event, but a change in our daily diet now and forever. Among the handful of those diet options that have been reliably, healthfully delivering the desired results for years is Weight Watchers.

I have never been a member of Weight Watchers myself, but have several friends and family members that have been or currently are. And unlike the horror stories we’ve all heard about diets ranging from those where you can only eat one food, to those where you have to eliminate entire food groups, I have never heard one bad word about Weight Watchers. And given my friends’ and family members’ capability of crafting a sharp-tongued complaint when they want to, that’s saying something!

While nobody loves the journey that is changing negative or less-than-ideal eating habits, the reason so many cite for their success on Weight Watchers is that it makes sense. Their rules don’t come from a place of punishment or denial – they’re smarter than that. The Weight Watchers team understands that if you are really, truly going to change the way you eat now, tomorrow, next year and the year after that, labeling foods as off-limits simply isn’t going to work. Who wants to sign up for a life with no pasta, bread, cake, candy or ice cream? Certainly not me! And with Weight Watchers, you don’t have to. Want to know why you don’t have to? Check back on the Blair Candy Blog next week for Part Two of this post!

Ferrara Pan Merges with Farley’s & Sathers Creating a Colossal Candy Company!

To say that either Ferrara Pan or Farley’s & Sathers were small before this monumental merger would be silly, but together they do create quite a candy force in the world of non-chocolates. We’ve been keeping up with the latest news on the merger for weeks, and in a June 21, 2012 article from the ChicagoTribune.com read that this candy combo is “believed to be the largest non-chocolate candy company in the United States.” Salvatore Ferrara II will be chairman and CEO of what will now be known as Ferrara Candy Co. Inc., and we’re confident this Candy King is more than ready to take the throne!

If you aren’t familiar with what each company brings to the candy shelf, we’ll highlight some sugary sweet classics. Bear in mind that Farley’s & Sather’s scooped up Brach’s Confections 5 years ago and you have a pretty good idea of how much candy is in this combined bowl!

Let’s think of Ferrara Pan and Farley’s & Sather’s as sports teams. Here’s who Blair Candy would choose as 2 favorite players from each team…

Team Ferrara Pan

Lemonheads: Packed with real lemon juice and enough fresh, fruity flavor to keep them in the starting lineup for decades, there’s no denying that Lemonheads are a fan-fave! The crowd goes wild for these yellow tart treats, and that lemon wearing a bowtie is about as cute as candy mascots come.

Jaw Breakers: They might be small in stature, but these candies prove that petite can pack a punch! Whatever color you start with, you’re in for a long-lasting walk down Sweet Street. You can throw these in at the start of the game and they’ll still be going strong well into overtime!

Team Farley’s & Sathers

Trolli Candy: Whether you can’t put Peachie-O’s down until the bag is empty, or it’s those Gummy Strawberry Creams that leave your taste buds begging for more, when your mouth wants to go all in with gummies, Trolli is ready to deliver!

Chuckles: These jelly candies may love to have a good time, but their commitment to serving up flavor is nothing to laugh about. Each bar brings lemon, lime, cherry, orange and licorice, offering something for everyone to enjoy. Talk about a team player!

Do You Think Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are Tasty Enough to Turn Thief For?

We should start with a little disclaimer about our stance on stealing: unless there are a handful of extenuating circumstances at play, it’s wrong. That said, every now and then we come across a story about a thief that leaves us laughing. And that’s exactly what happened today.

With a title like “Ohio candy thief targets mostly peanut butter cups,” you know you’re about to read the best thing you’ll read all day. Turns out there’s a candy thief in northern Ohio “who has stolen hundreds of dollars in peanut butter cups from a gas station store.” Hundreds of dollars! I know that gas stations don’t typically have the same low prices as Blair Candy, but regardless, hundreds of dollars will get you more than your fair share of cups.

The article goes on to explain this candy bandit’s M.O. As he usually commits his peanut buttery hustle after midnight, I’m going to profile him as a late night or early morning snacker. Maybe he likes to get a leg up on breakfast, giving his stolen sweets time to cool down in the refrigerator? Just a thought. What we do know for sure is that he’s fast. He pilches the Reese’s peanut butter cups and takes off before employees even have a chance to call the peanut butter police. (These are the regular police, by the way. We just like alliteration.)

As for trying to physically stop the thief, which we wouldn’t recommend anyway – it’s been unsuccessful. A clerk tried to capture this candy criminal but was “spun around” as he got away. I’m sure it wasn’t funny for the clerk involved, but come on, people! There’s a man out there stealing peanut butter cups on the regular, and if you get in his way he will spin you around and speed out the door. And it’s not a cartoon. If this wasn’t a crime, and likely at least somewhat scary in person, I’d say it’s some of the best advertising Reese’s could get!

Follow that Truck to the N.J. State Fair!

We have all fallen prey to the scent of a steakhouse or hot dog stand at least once in our lives. One second you don’t even realize you’re hungry, and the next you’re desperately searching for a parking space as your tummy rumbles with temptation. The power of smell is not to be underestimated; just think of how many times you have been transported to a particular place with just a whiff, how quickly the smell of your grandmother’s perfume can fill your mind with mountains of wonderful memories. To be sure, smell plays a monumental role in our lives, and can influence both the decisions we make and the way we feel.

Traditionally, most of us have been made aware of attractions through something we saw, be it a billboard, a television commercial or an advertisement on the side of a taxicab or bus. These are all effective ways to catch our attention and let us know of places or events we might enjoy visiting, be it a new restaurant, concert, performance or amusement park. To be sure, these methods of advertising work, along with word-of-mouth and other means. But something many of us might not have experienced is intentional scent marketing – emphasis on ‘intentional.’ Did that steakhouse engage in scent marketing when the aroma of a flavorful filet mignon brought us near? Yes – I think it’s safe to say it did. But that scent marketing was a natural byproduct of what was cooking inside, not a scent for scent’s sake. What the State Fair Meadowlands in New Jersey will be doing is something else entirely!

An article on DetroitNews.com caught my eye this morning as I was reading up on the latest candy news – Trucks emitting cotton candy scent promote N.J. state fair. Did my eyes deceive me, or was I really reading that there are magical trucks that smell of cotton candy? The only truck I’ve ever been trapped behind on the road reeked of exhaust – cotton candy would certainly be a welcome change! Reading on I discovered one of the coolest means of marketing I’ve ever had the pleasure of coming across – truly intentional scent marketing. According to the article, “fair operators will be spending $15,000 for two trucks to circulate in New Jersey and New York between now and the final weekend of the fair.” These trucks will be carrying mobile billboards that use a fabric drenched in the sweet smell of cotton candy and rely on the wind to carry the fair-favorite fragrance to passing drivers and passengers. The goal is to make them aware of the fair through sight and smell, which will ideally result in them making a stop at the fair part of their plans.

I know a good idea when I smell one, and I think this smells like success! What are your thoughts about scent marketing? Should Blair Candy jump on the scent wagon?

Unwrapping The 2012 Sweets & Snacks Expo

Wow, has this month flown by! One minute we were packing for the National Confectioners Association’s Sweets & Snacks Expo in Chicago, and the next, we were celebrating Memorial Day weekend! It’s been a busy month for us, with planning our move to our sparkling new (and much larger!) candy warehouse, debuting our new Candy By Decades section on our website, and of course – attending the Sweets & Snacks Expo in Chicago from May 8-10.

A whopping 570+ candy and snack companies exhibited their wares at the Sweets & Snacks Expo, debuting new candy and snack varieties that they hope will sell well this coming year. We came home with tons of tasty treats for our Blair Candy team to taste test and decide whether we should place them on our online candy store shelves. We were one of about 15,000 professionals in the candy industry to attend, and we had a wonderful time networking with candy companies and other candy and snack stores. We also reflected on the growth of the candy and snack industry through keynote sessions and learned some innovative marketing ideas to help us only grow.

Here’s a glimpse into the sweet life – at the Sweets and Snacks Expo 2012!

Keep a close eye on our online candy store shelves – we’re excited to be adding some of the fun new candy discovered at the Sweets & Snacks Expo!

Making That Birthday Gift Box So Much Sweeter

We’ve been making lots of candy-coated changes here at Blair Candy over the last few months, including moving soon into our brand new candy warehouse. We’ve just debuted another “new” – our Candy By Decades section on our website! We say with pride and affection that we’re pretty nuts about candy, and we’ve long been in wonderment on the different types of sweets that have blossomed from various decades over the last century. Doesn’t it just make sense that Fun Dip debuted in the same decade as when we needed a little “carefree” in our lives post-WWII?

We found ourselves chatting with many a customer on candy gift ideas, including offering up gift suggestions that relate to the gift recipient’s birth year or the decade they grew up in, so we figured, hey, why not make it easy and create a category of candy from each decade? A great birthday gift idea is to pair candy from the decade they were born or grew up in with a small gift that fits into that decade, as well! We put our heads together and came up with some awesome ideas for you:

  • Candy From The 20s: Pair some Caramel Creams, Chiclets, and Clark Bars with Betty Boop memorabilia, a typewriter key bracelet, or a Babe Ruth figurine.
  • Candy From The 30s: Combine delish Candy Buttons, PayDay bars, and Snickers with a so retro “tick tock” cat clock, Fedora hat, or a sleek cocktail shaker.
  • Candy From The 40s: Wrap up Junior Mints, Bazooka bubble gum, and Fun Dip in a package with a vintage pin-up girl poster, WWII coin collection, and a pack of Coca-Cola in the original Coke “bottle” look.
  • Candy From The 50s: Put a bow on a gift of Candy necklaces, Dum Dum lollipops, and Satellite Wafers by pairing it with a whimsical Gumby and Pokey set, Silly Putty, and a retro apron.
  • Candy From The 60s: Reflect on one fun decade by combining a gift of Gummy Swedish Fish, Fruit Stripe Gum, and Twizzlers with a tie-dyed shirt, Beatles poster, and a space shuttle figurine.
  • Candy From The 70s: Break that disco ball out and give a gift of PopRocks, Laffy Taffy, and Bubble Yum, along with a disco ball keychain, lava lamp, or anything with “groovy” written on it!
  • Candy From The 80s: Celebrate this neon-hued decade with a gift of Gummy Bears, Runts, and Nerds, paired with a so-fun Atari video game, Pac-Man wind-up toys, and a Rubik’s cube.

These are just a few ideas that our sugar-filled team came up with – what are some Candy By Decade candy and gift pairings that you’ve gifted or would love to gift?

Blair Candy Cares–Do You?

Earth Day is April 22nd, and we at BlairCandy.com want to do our part, and help you do yours, to give a little extra TLC to Mother Earth. It is easy to make some small changes to make a big impact!

In the past, we used packing peanuts for securing our shipments. Now, we use packing material that is comprised of 60% recycled material for almost all of our shipments; gone is the styrofoam, because this new option is made from paper!  BlairCandy.com recycles cardboard, too.

What You Can Do?

Switch from styrofoam and plastic products to paper ones, such as eco-friendly hot dog boats and earth friendly French fry trays.

It sounds simple, but to quote Woodsy The Owl, “Give a hoot; don’t pollute!” Habits start young, so be sure to teach children from early on that candy and gum wrappers go in the trash basket, not on the ground.

Think about volunteering for a local “Adopt A Roadway” initiative with your family or workplace and help keep the shoulders of the roads clean and clear of debris or trash. It’s good publicity for an employer, and a great way for children and adults to get involved in the community around the home. Contact AdoptAHighway.net or your local city or town hall for information.

Use biodegradable paper bags instead of plastic ones.  One plastic bag can literally take hundreds of years to break down, and may not ever fully decompose. With an estimated 100 billion plastic bags used every year, you can imagine what kind of problem we have on our hands.

Buy in bulk – with bulk candy, of course! It saves on packing materials, and is lighter on your wallet, too, as the average cost per unit decreases when the quantity in the package increases. Also, don’t be wasteful. If you have leftover candy (think Easter, Halloween, etc.) or supplies (Little League snack stands, family picnics, etc.) that you can’t use, don’t trash them; donate to a local shelter instead. You would be surprised at how much the little things are appreciated by your fellow citizens, and by good old Mother Earth.

Do We Eat Too Much Easter Candy? Never!!

We had the pleasure of coming across a hop-tastic Easter candy infographic posing the question “Do We Eat Too Much Easter Candy?” Sure, many of us nosh on our fair share of scrumptious candy on Easter morning…and Easter afternoon…and Easter night, but candy is all about moderation. Like all things, enjoy candy throughout the year in normal quantities, and when it comes to candy-rich holidays, like Easter, Valentine’s Day, and Halloween, treat yourself to all the seasonal candies till your heart’s content. Life’s short, so sweeten it with candy 😉

The candy facts we crave:

  • 16 billion Jelly Beans are created just for Easter
  • 90 million chocolate bunnies are produced each year for Easter
  • 4 million Peeps and Chicks are produced for Easter – each day!
  • Each household spends around $131 on Easter candy

Do you concur with these candylicious numbers? How much do you typically spend on Easter candy? What kind of Easter treats do you usually choose- Jelly Beans, Peeps, chocolate bunnies, Reeses Eggs, etc…

Share it with us by leaving a comment!

Easter by the Numbers

Displayed on Care2.com, created by DegreeSearch.org, and credited to Robert Banh

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