features - candy cane
Pickle and Bacon Are Some of the New Flavors of Candy Canes

by Hannah Benson

Candy canes, a classic candy perfect for gifts, christmas decorations, and the holidays in general. But, where do candy canes even come from?

No one is completely sure of the first and true origins of the candy cane. One myth suggest that a chorister made candy canes in 1670, for children to snack on during the Christmas services. The chorister wanted to remind the children of Christmas and shaped the candies to symbolize a shepherd’s hook. [1]

But no actual records were shown of candy canes until the mid 1700’s in Germany, where candy canes were just white candy sticks. Stripes and peppermint flavoring was added around the 1900’s. [1] In the mid 1920’s, Bob McCormack and his team had to throw away around 22% of their candy canes, due to breaking during the bending process. So, McCormack invented an “automatic machine” that would perfectly bend the candy. [2]

Now, candy canes are becoming widely produced in many colors, and flavors. Some flavors include Jolly Rancher, pickle, bacon, coffee, Swedish Fish, and even a wide variety of soda options! [3]

“Eww, I might try the soda flavors but all the others, no,” freshman Harshini Parandapalli shared.

“I’ve had an oreo one before, that was disgusting. Bacon is probably gross, but I could bring myself to have a coffee,” sophomore Morgan Carter said.

“I haven’t tried many different kinds of candy canes, so I couldn’t say for sure. Although, I think it’s cool that companies that produce candy are now branching out to different flavors, even though they may seem kind of irrational,” sophomore Lea Roberts shared.

There are a variety of candy cane flavors, and WHS students prefer different kinds.

“[My favorite flavor is] probably either the Spearmint, or some of the Life Savers. I just generally like them all,” freshman Lizzy Miller commented.

“Peppermint, the original peppermint,” Parandapalli replied.

Carter stated, “I like the green and pink ones, I think they are watermelon.”

“I’m basic, peppermint is my favorite,” Roberts exclaimed.

People are also finding many creative connections between the candy cane and Christmas. Some say that the candy cane shape can also stand for the “J” in Jesus. Also, the white can be seen as the symbolism of Jesus’s purity, and the red for his blood spilt during resurrection. Finally, the peppermint flavoring can be linked the Hyssop plant. [1] Hyssop is a member of the mint family, originally used for purifying the bible. [4]

No matter where or how the candy cane has come about, it is a symbol of the holidays and a favorite candy of many.

 

Sources:

[1] https://www.whychristmas.com/customs/candycanes.shtml

[2] https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/we-dont-know-the-origins-of-the-candy-cane-but-they-almost-certainly-were-not-christian-157380385/

[3] http://www.wideopeneats.com/candy-cane-flavors/

[4] https://104homestead.com/hyssop-need-plant-herb/