Last June, this blog profiled Vroom Foods, makers of highly caffeinated candies candies and mints. These products were created by an MBA student at Babson College looking for a non-coffee charge late at night. According to the WSJ, the big candy firms are now entering this market, pushing caffeine onto the public via different candy products. From the article (which includes slideshow/taste test) by Katy McLaughlin:
Buzz-inducing candy, spiked with caffeine and, often, vitamins, are the low-growth, $29 billion U.S. candy, gum and chocolate industry’s answer to surging competition from energy drinks. And just like those beverages, the caffeine-infused candy often sports a controversial name that critics say evokes illegal drugs.
Last month, Mars Inc. introduced Snickers Charged, a version of the candy bar with a cup-of-coffee’s worth of caffeine, plus B vitamins and amino acids, ingredients typically found in energy drinks. Jelly Belly Candy Co. has come out with Extreme Sport Beans, which are caffeinated and contain electrolytes, compounds beneficial for hydration, while Hershey Co. has launched caffeine-enhanced Ice Breakers Energy mints. Along with Jolt mints and gum, Buzz Bites, Foosh Mints, Crackheads chocolate-covered espresso beans and several others, these products make up a burgeoning “energy candy” category.