Thursday, June 16, 2005
Every Candy & Gum company are represented at the Candy Expo from the big boys like Hershey and Wrigley to small, obscure (and mostly foreign) representatives.
It was a bit disappointing looking for anything new or innovative. Seems like a lot of the manufacturers are playing it safe or just making small modifications on proven winners. Last year my favorite find was the World's Largest Gummi Bug, this year, though, the winner would have to be these:
Taking the old stringed candy necklace idea, in their line besides the pictured Candy G-String they had the Candy Bra for women and for men.... the Candy Pose Pouch (and I'm glad I forgot to take a picture of that.)
We try to see as many as the booths as possible. For my job, I wanted to see as many different logos and packaging that's out there. Well, that and to check out as many models as possible. Yowza! Some of the larger companies like Hershey, looks like they recruited directly from FHM magazine! When a really hot looking woman wearing a tight Hershey's T-shirt and jeans walks up and offers you a free Peanut Butter Cup, well, how can you say no?
At the end of our day, before we headed back to the airport, I left the main floor for the downstairs mezzanine. Each year every exhibitor (or buyer) gets to go below to the Candy Room. There, given an official candy bag, we're allowed one (and only one) run through to fill it up with whatever you want. I'm amazed at what goes on here. First, there seems to be more security at this one room then at the entire show. They're constantly shouting out that you can't bring any other bags in the room, that you can only go through once and that your bag will be measured at the end. You can fill it to the top, but not over the top!
Inside the room are large bins filled with small bags, boxes, and individually wrapped pieces. Considering that the bulk of this are just extra crap from the Candy Companies, by the reactions of the ravenous crowd, you'd think they were giving away gold! I swear, it's nuts! People pushing others aside, trying to cram as much into their little bags as possible.
I saw one old guy cramming Jelly Beans and Red Hots into his pockets, besides his bag.
It was insane!
Personally I wasn't too impressed with the variety of candies & gum, a lot of stuff that I wasn't too interested in. So I crammed my bag mostly with a ton of M&M's and M&M's with Peanuts packs.
I'm back here at work from another year at the Candy Expo. Overall it was well worth going to, got a lot out of it and looks like some interesting projects on the horizon. (and when I can, I'll post pictures of some of these as I finish them.)