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Nestle Japan Ltd.
Nestle Japan Ltd.

24-Carat-Gold-Wrapped Kit Kat Bars Will Be Sold in Japan This Holiday Season

Nestle Japan Ltd.
Nestle Japan Ltd.

If there were an annual award for "Country With the Most Unique Food Variations," Japan would be the only nominee year after year. Nestle Japan recently announced that it will be offering gold Kit Kat bars this holiday season, which would sound insane if it were anywhere else in the world. But because it's Japan, it is completely normal.

From Ice Cucumber Pepsi to other interesting flavors of well-known products, the store shelves in Japan are filled with unusual labels that could only work within the country's borders. These special Kit Kat bars will be individually wrapped by hand in 24-carat gold leaf, in celebration of the millionth customer to visit their specialty Kit Kat Chocolatory stores. There are only 500 of the special candies, so they will not be available in normal stores, and each bar will set Japanese snackers back 2016 Yen, which is around $16.

According to Nerdist, Chocolatory members will also be given the chance to win a real 24-carat gold Kit Kat. There are no known plans to extend the special product or the contest to any other city or country.

Nestle Japan Ltd.

[h/t Nerdist]

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Hate Red M&M's? You Need a Candy Color-Sorting Machine
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You don’t have to be a demanding rock star to live a life without brown M&M's or purple Skittles—all you need is some engineering know-how and a little bit of free time.

Mechanical engineering student Willem Pennings created a machine that can take small pieces of candy—like M&M's, Skittles, Reese’s Pieces, etc.—and sort them by color into individual piles. All Pennings needs to do is pour the candy into the top funnel; from there, the machine separates the candy—around two pieces per second—and dispenses all of it into smaller bowls at the bottom designated for each variety.

The color identification is performed with an RGB sensor that takes “optical measurements” of candy pieces of equal dimensions. There are limitations, though, as Pennings revealed in a Reddit Q&A: “I wouldn't be able to use this machine for peanut M&M's, since the sizes vary so much.”

The entire building process lasted from May through December 2016, and included the actual conceptualization, 3D printing (which was outsourced), and construction. The entire project was detailed on Pennings’s website and Reddit's DIY page.

With all of the motors, circuitry, and hardware that went into it, Pennings’s machine is likely too ambitious of a task for the average candy aficionado. So until a machine like this hits the open market, you're probably stuck buying bags of single-colored M&M’s in bulk online or sorting all of the candy out yourself the old fashioned way.

To see Pennings’s machine in action, check out the video below:

[h/t Refinery 29]

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See How Candy Canes Are Made
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According to legend, a 17th-century German choirmaster bent sugar sticks into shepherd’s crooks and gave them to children acting in his Nativity pageant as a treat for good behavior. Lo and behold, the world’s first candy canes were born.

Over the years, manufacturers have perfected their own methods of making the holiday treat. In the below video from Lofty Pursuits, a Tallahassee, Florida-based purveyor of hard candies, you can watch how the expert team of candy-makers turn seemingly everyday ingredients like sugar, water, and corn syrup into a sticky mixture. Gradually, the pliable concoction is folded, stretched, rolled, cut, and bent into candy canes—a mesmerizing visual process for anyone who’s ever sucked on one of the sugary confections and suspected it came from somewhere other than Santa’s workshop.

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