Courtesy of Cow Candy
Courtesy of Cow Candy

Candy-Flavored String Cheese Exists. Why? Your Guess Is as Good as Ours

Courtesy of Cow Candy
Courtesy of Cow Candy

Kids and teens need plenty of calcium, but it’s hard to get enough of it when they prefer candy to cottage cheese. To entice picky diners, Eater reports that a Wisconsin-based company called Cow Candy has created fruit-flavored Monterey Jack cheese sticks, designed to be a sweet alternative to sugary treats.

Contrary to its name, Cow Candy’s products aren’t packed with sugar. According to the manufacturer, each cheese stick contains just 1 to 2 grams of the addictive additive and gets its taste and color from natural fruit flavoring. And just like conventional cheese sticks, they're packed with calcium.

Cow Candy’s current selection of flavored cheese snacks includes grape, orange, honey, and two branded flavors—Pinkie Pie Strawberry and Optimus Prime Fruit Punch—inspired by a recent partnership with toy manufacturer Hasbro. If these flavors sound strange, keep in mind that they’re designed for kids and that adults also enjoy fruit-flavored milk products, like yogurt.

"I like to explain to people that think we are a bit out-there (which we are totally OK being), that fruit and cheese have been paired together for eons," Cow Candy founder Danyel O'Connor told The Huffington Post in an email. "Even today, as adults, we enjoy cheese and wine together or pair our cheeses with grapes, apples, figs and the like. Cow Candy is just the juvenile expression of this pairing (P.S. strawberry milk exists and so does yogurt with fruit flavorings―and a whole lot more sugar)."

Whether you’re intrigued by candy-flavored cheese or think it sounds like a Willy Wonka plot gone wrong, you can sample them for yourself by visiting select grocery stores in states including Minnesota, Arizona, and California. Cow Candy products are also available for online purchase.

[h/t Eater]

Photos courtesy of Cow Candy

Afternoon Map
The Most Popular Jelly Bean Flavors in America, State by State

America loves jelly beans. According to the National Confectioners Association, U.S. candy lovers buy about 16 billion jelly beans per year. But which flavors are they buying? Just like every state has its favorite horror movie, dog breed, and comic-book universe, America’s love of certain jelly bean flavors varies by region. went through more than a decade of its sales data and polled 12,000 candy customers through SurveyMonkey and Facebook to figure out the top jelly bean flavor across the country and in each state, creating an interactive infographic with the results.

Though it sounds like an unusual flavor to us, buttered popcorn is a shockingly popular taste, ranking No. 1 nationally and in 10 states. Black licorice was ranked No. 2 nationally, and was the state-wide favorite in eight states.

Other flavors were not as widely beloved. Coconut was the favorite flavor of just one state, Massachusetts. Chocolate was a popular flavor only in Illinois, ranking first there, but almost at the bottom of the list nationally—21 out of 30 flavors.

Some flavors the survey asked about didn’t even make it on the state list. Pomegranate wasn’t in the running—even when you include data on each state’s first, second, and third-favorite flavors. Nor was raspberry, lime, or other seemingly tasty jelly beans.

Scroll over the infographic to see which flavor each state’s candy lovers chose. See if your state’s candy tastes are accurately represented, then scroll down to see the full list of national rankings.

Source: 10+ years online candy sales data from

1. Buttered Popcorn
2. Black Licorice
3. Cinnamon
4. Watermelon
5. Cherry
6. Pear / Juicy Pear
7. Orange
8. Green Apple
9. Toasted Marshmallow
10. Coconut
11. Strawberry
12. Cotton Candy
13. Blueberry
14. Bubblegum
15. Root Beer
16. Peach
17. Coffee
18. Grape
19. Lemon
20. Red Apple
21. Chocolate
22. Banana
23. Lime
24. Sour Jelly Beans
25. Tutti Frutti
26. Maple
27. Vanilla
28. Cream Soda
29. Raspberry
30. Pomegranate

Gumdrop LTD.
British Designer Recycles Used Chewing Gum Into Everyday Items—Including the Soles of Shoes
Gumdrop LTD.
Gumdrop LTD.

Even if you never chew gum, you may have stepped on a gob of the stuff discarded on a sidewalk or felt it stuck beneath a park bench. Chewing gum is the second most common source of litter, behind cigarettes, and because it isn't biodegradable, cities are struggling to get rid of it. Now, the BBC reports that British designer Anna Bullus has found an ingenious alternative to tossing old gum on the ground: She's repurposing it into new products normally made out of rubber or plastic.

Bullus started her gum recycling project by installing bright pink bins called Gumdrops around sites in the UK. The containers, which are made from recycled gum themselves, come with signs telling passersby that any old gum dropped into the bin will be recycled. In some places, the receptacles led to an 89 percent decrease in gum litter.

After analyzing the chemistry of chewing gum, Bullus found that it contains polyisobutylene, a type of polymer similar to plastic that's often used as a synthetic rubber. This means it can be used to make everyday products like doorstops, coffee cups, and plasticware. It can even been turned into playful pink soles for shoes, which look much more attractive than the gum that normally ends up on the bottom of your shoe.

The collected gum is processed with other plastic polymers at a recycling plant in Worcester, and from there it's sent to a plastic molding specialist in Leicester, where Bullus executes her designs. Combs, lunchboxes, pencils, Frisbees and many other items made from gum are available to order from the Gumdrop website. Anna Bullus is also accepting suggestions of other products to make from the chewed-up gum she collects.

Pink coffee cups.

Pink guitar pick.

Dog catching frisbee.

Pink rubber boot.

[h/t BBC]

All images courtesy of Gumdrop Ltd.


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