Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Candy culture: Cashing in on Halloween

Date:
October 24, 2010
Source:
Saint Joseph's University
Summary:
The average American will spend $66.28 on Halloween this year. Second only to costumes, candy eats up the largest chunk of this budget with American families spending an average of $22 each Halloween on confections. When trick-or-treating entered the American scene in the 1920s, neighbors gave children items like apples, pastries, breads and even money. So why, 40 years later, are there $1 billion in candy sales each Halloween? How has food marketing taken over this tradition?

According to the National Retail Federation, the average American will spend $66.28 on Halloween this year. Second only to costumes, candy eats up the largest chunk of this budget with American families spending an average of $22 each Halloween on confections.

When trick-or-treating entered the American scene in the 1920s, neighbors gave children items like apples, pastries, breads and even money. So why, 40 years later, are there $1 billion in candy sales each Halloween? How has food marketing taken over this tradition?

"Companies went after Halloween candy a long time ago," says Nancy Childs, Ph.D., professor of food marketing. "Candy companies are active and aggressive marketers who offer convenient, pre-packaged treats to fulfill the tradition; Halloween is now a model for other holidays -- candy baskets for Easter, candy canes for Christmas, holiday-themed M&Ms, chocolates for Valentine's Day."

Childs, a professor of food marketing at Saint Joseph's University, has extensively researched the obesity epidemic in America. She says that when Americans began rewarding children with candy, sometime in the late 19th century, it further embedded a culture of fun and positive emotional relationships with sweet treats.

To illustrate her point, Childs demonstrates a candy-association exercise she uses in her classes at the University. Each student is given a Hershey kiss and asked to vocalize their associations with the chocolate candy. "The students are always amazed at how many vivid and emotional memories they have wrapped inside a Hershey kiss -- childhood, holidays, favorite times, grandparents," she says. "This emotional connection is very real."

Childs encourages people to enjoy sweet treats in moderation. "The fun occasions, like Halloween, should be enjoyed for just what they are," she says. "Fun and occasional."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Saint Joseph's University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Saint Joseph's University. "Candy culture: Cashing in on Halloween." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101018170158.htm>.
Saint Joseph's University. (2010, October 24). Candy culture: Cashing in on Halloween. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101018170158.htm
Saint Joseph's University. "Candy culture: Cashing in on Halloween." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101018170158.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

AP (Apr. 16, 2014) Pushing the limits on style and self-expression is a rite of passage for teens and even younger kids. How far should schools go with their dress codes? The courts have sided with schools in an era when school safety is paramount. (April 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Couples Who Sleep Less Than An Inch Apart Might Be Happiest

Couples Who Sleep Less Than An Inch Apart Might Be Happiest

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study by British researchers suggests couples' sleeping positions might reflect their happiness. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins