11 Awesome Candies That You’ll Probably Never Eat Again

With the arrival of June comes the beginning of National Candy Month, a 30-day ode to the sweet, tart, and sometimes salty corner store concoctions that have been the frequent source of failed diets everywhere. There are two ways to celebrate: by overindulging in your favorite candies of today and/or by remembering the (for) now-discontinued treats of your past.


This sugar-coated ode to dumpster diving featured a tiny plastic garbage can filled with Pez-like candy pellets in the shape of items you might actually find in a garbage can (a dead fish, an old shoe, a dog bone, a discarded soda bottle). Fortunately, this novelty treat tasted much better. Multitasking types loved the fact that, once the candy was consumed, the toy trash can could be used for storing stuff like stickers, erasers and/or Garbage Pail Kids cards (perhaps not coincidentally, both Garbage Can-dy and Garbage Pail Kids were created by Art Spiegelman, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Maus, who worked in the product development department of The Topps Company at the time).



Introduced in 1986, Bar None was Hershey’s original foray into the gourmet chocolate bar market before a gourmet chocolate bar market actually existed. Combining the best ingredients of the most popular bars of the time, its original incarnation featured a chocolate-covered cocoa wafer filled with (yet more) chocolate and peanuts in an attempt—as the slogan went—to “tame the chocolate beasty.” Whatever that means. In 1992, Hershey tinkered with the flavor mash-up a bit, adding an extra wafer and some caramel into the mix. The reformulation didn’t help slagging sales; the candy was discontinued in 1997, though it still maintains a fan base of sweet-toothed admirers hoping for its comeback.


Bonkers—Nabisco’s chewable fruit candy with a gum-like outer shell and fruity inside—are proof of the power of advertising. Even if you don’t remember the artificial fruit flavor of the candy itself, it’s hard to forget the product’s popular commercial campaign, in which a group of strait-laced characters would be “bonked” into silliness by a giant piece of fruit from above. But when the commercial campaign slowed down, so did the candy’s sales, ultimately leading to a cease in production altogether. Yet there’s potentially good news on the horizon for fans of this treat as well, as Leaf Brands has struck again! In 2012, the company acquired Bonkers’ manufacturing rights and plans to have Bonkers back on the market by the end of 2014.


First things first: there is not a piece of poultry to be found in The Chicken Dinner Bar. Introduced during the Depression era, the chocolate-covered nut roll’s name was a reference to Herbert Hoover’s prosperity-minded presidential campaign promise of “a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage.” Despite the candy’s unfortunate name (even the commercials made reference to a clucking chicken and the candy was delivered to stores in a chicken-shaped truck), the candy had some serious legs, remaining on shelves for nearly 40 years. Production ceased only when its original manufacturer, the Sperry Candy Company, was acquired by Pearson’s in 1962. 


Another poorly-named relic from the 1920s, re-discovered in Steve Almond’s book Candyfreak: A Journey Through the Chocolate Underbelly of America, is The Vegetable Sandwich Bar. Unfortunately, unlike the sugary Chicken Dinner Bar, this snack was exactly what it sounded like: Dubbed a “health” bar, the wannabe candy actually contained cabbage, celery, peppers and tomatoes and was marketed for its ability to aid in digestion and “not constipate.” Mmmm … sounds delicious.


Pop Rewind

Like any food category, candy goes through phases. In the 1980s, this meant a barrage of beverage-flavored chewing gums, including the Gatorade-inspired Gatorgum which, like its beverage predecessor, promised to quench one’s thirst. While it, too, still maintains a legion of fans, the chewing gum’s super-tart flavor—which could actually hurt one’s mouth on occasion—probably didn’t help its short-lived time on grocery store shelves. Its beverage-themed competitors—including Dr. Pepper Gum, 7-Up Gum and A&W Root Beer Gum—didn’t fare much better.


Even diehard white chocolate connoisseurs know that its super-sweet flavor is an acquired taste. And while Nestle did its best to promote the Alpine White bar as a sexy and sophisticated alternative to plain old milk chocolate—as evidenced by their video art-inspired commercial campaign, seen here—not enough customers were biting. A Facebook campaign to bring the bar back has so far only garnered 3,400 supporters.


Note to candy manufacturers: As long as Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (in all their many forms) are on the market, no new peanut-butter infused concoction will ever compete. But PB Max gets props for trying with something other than a direct Reese’s cup rip-off. Available in the early 1990s, PB Max was a peanut butter-topped chocolate cookie that experienced a fair amount of success upon its introduction. The strangest part of its disappearance, according to Joël Glenn Brenner’s book The Emperors Of Chocolate? That despite $50 million in sales, manufacturer Mars decided to pull it from the shelves because the company founders don’t like the taste of peanut butter.


Gone but Not Forgotten Groceries

With Nature Valley as their manufacturer, Peanut Butter Boppers were marketed more like granola bars. But any log-like snack that consists of peanut butter, chocolate and graham cracker nuggets is a candy bar in our book. It didn’t help that the commercials touted the snack as a wild-and-crazy kind of treat. Unfortunately, little information exists on why Boppers—which were introduced in the mid-1980s and extinct by the end of the decade—went bye-bye.


Collecting Candy

What a difference a decade makes. In the 1980s, Tart ‘n’ Tinys—Wonka’s candy-coated, fruit-flavored pellets, which came in five flavors—were one of the company’s best-selling products. But by the 1990s, they were discontinued. Perhaps it had something to do with their textural similarity to Wonka’s SweeTarts, which are still available in their original roll plus in chewy, giant, miniature and gummy varieties. Eagle-eyed Web shoppers may still be able to find a box or two online; just know that any original box is going to be at least two decades old!


Old Time Candy

Considering their usefulness as both a sugary treat and a potentially lethal weapon in a pinch, what’s more surprising than the Astro Pop’s disappearance from the market in 2004 is that they remained on shelves for more than four decades. Created by two actual rocket scientists, the sucker’s shape was modeled after a three-stage rocket and purported to be the “longest lasting lollipop on earth.” The Astro Pop was acquired by Spangler Candy (the makers of Dum Dums and circus peanuts) in 1987, only to be discontinued 17 years later when the pop no longer seemed to mesh with the company’s larger corporate strategy. But there’s a happy ending for fans of this multi-colored treat, as its manufacturing rights were acquired by Leaf Brand—a candy company intent on resurrecting retro treats—which is once again making the iconic sucker available to the public and maintains a popular Facebook page in its honor.

From Snoopy to Shark Bait: The Top Slang Word in Each State

There’s a minute, and then there’s a hot minute. Defined as “a longish amount of time,” this unit of time is familiar to Alabamians but may stir up confusion beyond the state’s borders.

It’s Louisianans, though, who feel the “most misunderstood,” according to the results of a survey regarding regional slang by PlayNJ. Of the Louisiana residents surveyed, 72 percent said their fellow Americans from other states—even neighboring ones—have a hard time grasping their lingo. Some learned the hard way that ordering a burger “dressed” (with lettuce, tomato, pickles, and mayo) isn’t universally understood, nor is the phrase “to pass a good time” (instead of “to have” a good time).

After surveying 2000 people (with proportional numbers from each state), PlayNJ created a map showing the top slang word in each state. Many are words that are unlikely to be understood beyond state lines, but others—like California’s bomb (something you really like) and New York’s deadass (to be completely serious)—have spread well beyond their respective borders thanks to memes and internet culture.

Hawaiians are also known for their distinctive slang words, with 71 percent reporting that words like shaka (hello) and poho (waste of time) are frequently misunderstood. Shark bait, one of the state’s more colorful terms, refers to tourists who are so pale that they attract sharks.

Check out the full list below and test your knowledge of regional slang words with PlayNJ’s online quiz.

A chart showing the top slang words in each state
20 States With the Highest Rates of Skin Cancer

They don’t call it the Sunshine State for nothing. Floridians get to soak up the sun year-round, but that exposure to harmful UV rays also comes with consequences. Prevention magazine reported that Florida has the highest rate of skin cancer in the U.S., according to a survey by Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS).

BCBS surveyed 9 million of its insured members who had been diagnosed with skin cancer between 2014 and 2016 and found that Florida had the highest rate of skin cancer at 7.1 percent. People living in eastern states tend to be more prone to skin cancer, and diagnoses are more common among women.

Here are the 20 states with the highest rates of skin cancer:

1. Florida: 7.1 percent
2. Washington, D.C.: 5.8 percent
3. Connecticut: 5.6 percent
4. Maryland: 5.3 percent
5. Rhode Island: 5.3 percent
6. Vermont: 5.3 percent
7. North Carolina: 5.2 percent
8. New York: 5 percent
9. Massachusetts: 5 percent
10. Colorado: 5 percent
11. Arizona: 5 percent
12. Virginia: 5 percent
13. Delaware: 4.8 percent
14. Kentucky: 4.7 percent
15. Alabama: 4.7 percent
16. New Jersey: 4.7 percent
17. Georgia: 4.7 percent
18. West Virginia: 4.5 percent
19. Tennessee: 4.5 percent
20. South Carolina: 4.4 percent

It may come as a surprise that sunny California doesn’t make the top 20, and Hawaii is the state with the lowest rate of skin cancer at 1.8 percent. Prevention magazine explains that this could be due to the large population of senior citizens in Florida and the fact that the risk of melanoma, a rare but deadly type of skin cancer, increases with age. People living in regions with higher altitudes also face a greater risk of skin cancer due to the thinner atmosphere and greater exposure to UV radiation, which explains why Colorado is in the top 10.

The good news is that the technology used to detect skin cancer is improving, and researchers hope that AI can soon be incorporated into more skin cancer screenings. To reduce your risk, be sure to wear SPF 30+ sunscreen when you know you’ll be spending time outside, and don’t forget to reapply it every two hours. 

[h/t Prevention]


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