It’s the season of parties, pastries, goody plates and candy. Each December, the treats come out en masse as the Christmas marathon brings out some of the worst dietary habits in all of us.
Brownies! Why not? Shortbread? Yes, please. Eggnog – you mean a cup of heavy cream and eggs? Sure. And, of course, after the confections there are the candies. Reese’s puts out its peanut butter trees, M&Ms go red and green and peppermint everything spontaneously appears.
With the annual glut of sweets top of mind, CandyStore.com is out with a report detailing every state’s favorite holiday candy. Sugar is big business this time of year; the National Retail Federation forecasts the average consumer will spend $108 dollars on candy and food – twice what they’re expected to spend on decorations. Candy sales are expected to be over $2 billion this year. That’s up from a projected $1.9 billion in sales in 2017.
According to CandyStore.com’s findings, Idaho residents are particularly partial to M&Ms during the holidays. Fun fact: red and green are two of the original five colors M&Ms debuted with in 1941. The Gem State doesn’t appear to have a penchant for winter-themed candies (i.e. peppermint treats); after M&Ms, Idaho goes for Hershey kisses and chocolate Santas. While the argument can be made that chocolate Santas are a Christmas treat, plain chocolate is plain chocolate. I’m confident chocolate Easter bunnies would back me up on this.
While proudly rugged Idaho – or at least its sweet tooth – is a bit of a Scrooge when it comes to its candy tastes, the Gem State’s neighbors verge on spirit levels akin to Clark Griswold. Washington’s favorite Christmas candy is candy canes, peppermint bark is number one in Nevada and Utah has a thing for Reindeer Corn – the white, green, and redheaded step child to Halloween staple Candy Corn.
Among outlying favorites this time of year are Snickers, Starburst and Pez.
The next time you grab that handful of Christmas M&Ms, remember: calories don’t count in December – it’s a holiday miracle.
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