Necco Wafers have been a classic candy staple since their invention in 1847. They were even distributed to soldiers during World War II because the candies are so durable! You may remember Necco Wafers from trick-or-treating, or maybe you have memories of your grandparents sharing them with you. Undoubtedly, the classic candies figure into your childhood in some way.
Still, Necco Wafers are not as flashy as more modern confections, like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups or Baby Ruths. Naysayers have complained that Necco Wafers taste like drywall or chalk; time and again, the wafers have topped lists of America’s most hated candy.
Be that as it may, Necco Wafers are suddenly having a huge revival. Why? Because the candy factory — the New England Confectionary Company, or Necco — that makes these deliciously despised candies may shut down.
In March, Necco CEO Michael McGee told the Boston Globe that the failing company would be closing down — and laying off nearly 400 people — if it could not find a buyer.
The news was not only troubling for employees and their families, but also for anyone who loves the wafers, or at least loves the nostalgia factor behind this iconic American candy. In fact, the news that Necco might be closing shop for good sparked a candy-buying panic among Americans, with Necco sales going through the roof as consumers sought to buy as many as Necco Wafers as they could before it was too late.
According to CandyStore.com, sales of Necco Wafers increased by 63% after the news of the potential factory shutdown broke. The hashtag #SaveNecco is devoted to keeping this brand afloat.
Unless a wannabe Willy Wonka comes out of the woodwork to buy the company, May could be the last month that Necco Wafers — as well as Necco’s other products like Candy Buttons, Sweethearts, Squirrel Nut Zippers, Mary Janes and Clark Bars — are ever made.
Even if you don’t love these candies, it is sad to see the possible end of such a iconic American brand. You had better buy a few packages if you are a fan, because these babies are flying off the shelves!