Observed on February 15th, National Gumdrop Day recognizes a favorite candy of many; the gumdrop!
Gumdrops are a tasty, colorful, chewy candy that is made with gelatin and then coated with sugar. They come in a variety of flavors and can either be fruity or spicy. These little candy treats make terrific embellishments for decorating gingerbread houses and other baked goods.
Credit for the modern gumdrop invention goes to chemist and candy manufacturer Percy S. Truesdell.
According to articles after his death in 1948, Truesdell took the once hard, poorly flavored glob of sugar and turned it into the smooth, chewy delight we enjoy today. While at the University of Ohio, the chemist altered the consistency of the of the candy by experimenting with the amount of starch used. He later worked for the Snyder-Chafee Company until 1915. In 1916, Truesdell founded and incorporated the P.S. Truesdell Candy Manufacturing Company. At his death, he became known as the Gumdrop King.
- Candy became widely available only 130 years ago. Until then, people would make their own fudge or caramel at home.
- Candy accounts for only 6% of the added sugar in the American diet. Soft drinks and juice account for 46%.
- The classic board game, Candy Land, features both a Gumdrop Pass and a Gumdrop Mountain.
- About 65 percent of American candy brands have been around for more than 50 years.
- Gumdrops, a fruit or spice flavored sugar coated gelatin candy, usually conical in shape. Other shapes and flavors; Orange slices, Licorice Babies, and Spearmint Leaves.
- The most popular flavors are cherry, grape, orange, lemon, and spice flavors like clove, cinnamon, mint, and anise(licorice)
- The NASA Apollo Command modules were nicknamed “Gumdrops” because of it’s conical shape.
- Gumdrops have been popular for many years in decorating gingerbread houses.
- Branch’s Candy holds the world record for largest gumdrop which weighted in a little larger than 10 lbs. If you had eaten it you would have consumed 15,127 calories.