National Sour Candy Day Date in the current year: July 18, 2024

National Sour Candy Day Candy is supposed to be sweet, right? Well, yes… but also not necessarily. Sour candy has its fair share of fans who like their treats sour or tart. They even celebrate National Sour Candy Day on July 18 every year.

Sour candies are a relatively recent invention. Their history can be traced back to the 19th century, when candy manufacturers used vinegar and other acidic ingredients to convert cane sugar to glucose. The resulting sweet and sour taste was a by-product of the process rather than its purpose.

The modern sour candy came to be in the mid-20th century. One of the factors that boosted its development was the commercialization of Halloween: as trick-or-treating spread throughout the United States and became a popular tradition, candy manufacturers started to experiment with new flavors and types of candy, and promoted their creations around Halloween.

One of the first companies to experiment with unusual candy flavors was the Ferrara Candy Company. In 1954, two years after the first full-scale test of a hydrogen bomb, it introduced Atomic Fireball, a sweet and hot candy with cinnamon and capsaicin. Eight years later, the company introduced Lemonhead, a brand of lemon-flavored sweet and sour candy.

Other candy manufacturers jumped on the sour candy bandwagon in about a decade. In the early 1970s, Frank Galatolie of Jaret International, developed a sweet-and-sour candy he named Mars Men. It was a soft candy coated in inverted sugar syrup and sour sugar (a combination of sugar and citric or tartaric acid).

Several years later, Cadbury (of which Jaret International was a subsidiary) and Smeera Blyton Licorice Company (Sweden) founded the Allen Candy Company in Canada to produce the new candy. In 1985, it was re-branded as Sour Patch Kids, most likely as a reference to Cabbage Patch Kids that became popular around that time. The current owner of the Sour Patch Kids brand is Mondelēz International.

Another brand of sour candy that emerged in the 1970s was Warheads. Originally invented in Taiwan in 1975, Warheads were first imported to the United States in 1993 by The Foreign Candy Company. Since 2004, the brand has been owned by Impact Confections. Warheads, which come in many varieties and flavors, owe their “extreme” sour flavor to citric acid and malic acid.

Today, sour candies come in all shapes, sizes and flavors, ranging from soft candies coated in sour sugar to hard candies. They are popular among children and adults alike; some people enjoy them around Halloween, while others indulge in sour treats all year long.

National Sour Candy Day was created in 2015 by American Licorice Company, the manufacturer of the Sour Punch brand, to celebrate the numerous sour candy varieties and encourage everyone to give sour candies a try.

There are many ways to celebrate National Sour Candy Day. You can share a pack of your favorite sour candy with a friend, visit a sweet shop and pick up several different flavors of sour candy, throw a candy-themed party for your friends, and spread the word about the holiday on social media with the hashtags #NatonalSourCandyDay and #SourCandyDay.

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National Sour Candy Day, food days, observances in the US, unofficial holidays, American Licorice Company