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Necco Wafers, a beloved candy with a rich history spanning over 170 years, are a unique, sugar-based confection sold in rolls of variously flavored thin disks. Produced by the New England Confectionery Company (Necco), these iconic candies are renowned for their distinct flavors and enduring legacy in the candy industry.
The story of Necco Wafers began in 1847 when an English immigrant, Oliver Chase, invented a lozenge cutting machine that was used to produce the wafers. At the time of the American Civil War, these candies, then known as "hub wafers", were carried by Union soldiers as a convenient source of nourishment.
Necco Wafers played a significant role in World War II, as the United States government ordered Necco to produce its wafers for soldiers overseas. This led to a surge in sales, and upon returning home, many soldiers continued to purchase the wafers, turning into faithful customers.
The Necco company was acquired several times, with the first acquisition taking place in 1963. The most recent acquisition occurred in 2018, a turbulent time for the company when its future was uncertain.
In 2018, the Necco company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, causing the production of Necco Wafers to be suspended. However, the Spangler Candy Company purchased the brand and production equipment, leading to the return of Necco Wafers in May 2020.
Currently, Necco Wafers are back in production at a facility in Mexico, ready to be enjoyed by candy lovers once again.
Each roll of Necco Wafers includes eight flavors: lemon, lime, orange, clove, cinnamon, wintergreen, licorice, and chocolate. In 2009, Necco made a significant change in its formula, eliminating artificial colors and flavors. However, due to customer feedback, Necco reverted back to its original formula in 2011.
Over the years, various versions of Necco Wafers have been introduced. This includes Tropical Necco Wafers with flavors like mango and coconut, Chocolate Necco Wafers composed entirely of the chocolate flavor, and Necco Sour Wafers offering a tart twist. During the holiday season, you may also find rare candy cane flavored rolls.
Necco Wafers have a colorful history that matches their vivid flavors. From their origins in the 19th century to their revival in the 21st, they continue to be a beloved candy for many, embodying a sweet slice of American history.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: When were Necco Wafers first produced? A: Necco Wafers were first produced in 1847.
Q: Who owns Necco Wafers now? A: As of 2020, the Spangler Candy Company owns the Necco Wafers brand.
Q: What are the flavors of Necco Wafers? A: Necco Wafers come in eight flavors: lemon, lime, orange, clove, cinnamon, wintergreen, licorice, and chocolate.
Q: What is the ingredient list for Necco Wafers? A: The ingredients in Necco Wafers are sugar, corn syrup, gelatin, gums, colorings, and flavorings.