Necco Wafers have been around since 1847 but as a sign of the times they’ve gone “green”.
The 162-year-old Massachusetts company has taken Necco Wafers and made them “all-natural” which makes them the largest mass-produced candy line in the U.S. to get rid of artificial flavoring and colors.
Necco, which is short for the New England Confectionary Co., makes over 4 billion of the quarter-sized wafers each year.
Now instead of being filled with artificial coloring they will be colored with beet juice, purple cabbage, cocoa powder and turmeric.
The prices are staying the same so consumers won’t have to worry about price hikes and they will notice a very minimal difference in taste.
The look is a little different as the natural colors give the candy more of a pastel appearance but there is one thing that will be missing.
Green. (Funny considering they have gone green but lost the green wafer)
Green, which was one of the eight original wafer colors, turned out to be too hard to duplicate in the all-natural process. The lime flavor could be reproduced naturally but the color posed a problem, so bye bye lime.
That leaves the seven other original flavor-color combos: orange- orange; lemon- yellow; clove- pink; cinnamon -white; wintergreen -purple; licorice -gray; and chocolate -which now comes in variations of milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate and mocha (yummy, yum- four varieties of chocolate).
While taste testing the treats I found there to be no taste of the purple cabbage, beet juice or other natural flavorings. The flat, hard, sugary discs have a slight chalky texture and very sweet taste which is pretty much the same as they’ve always been. Now they are not just yummy but they’re natural too.
The Necco Wafers are hitting the retail stores just in time for Halloween.
So if you’ve been looking for something “greener” to hand out to the trick or treaters consider the new natural Necco Wafers. You should be able to pick them up at your local grocery store.
[This post was written by Wenona Napolitano.]