Valentine’s Day, an occasion on which 80% of Americans typically share chocolate and candy with friends, family and loved ones, according to National Confectioners Association (NCA) data, got an extra shot of adrenalin this year.
Sweethearts, the conversation heart candy often seen as the leading consumer choice to gift for Valentine’s Day, returned to shelves just in time for Valentine’s Day. It reemerged after missing the 2019 occasion due to an ownership change, from New England Confectionary Co. (NECCO) to Spangler Candy Co.
NECCO closed its doors in 2018, and Round Hill Investments—which bought Twinkie maker Hostess when it was in bankruptcy proceedings—purchased the bankrupt candy maker at auction and then divested NECCO wafers and the Sweethearts brand.
The upheaval that occurred from one parent company to another for the iconic brand means that the 2020 occasion won’t see mass distribution of Sweethearts for another year, according to Spangler spokeswoman Diana Moore Eschhofen.
Click through for a glimpse of five Valentine’s Day-inspired debuts for the 2020 occasion.