'Sweet Talk': The evolution of conversation heart candy

Remember the days of swapping holiday candy with your classmates in school? We're thinking about those chalky heart-shaped candies in particular. Conversation hearts. 

The history of Sweethearts

The very first conversation heart was created in 1866 by a man named Daniel Chase. Daniel made a machine that pressed food dye letters onto candy lozenges made famous by his brother, NECCO founder Oliver Chase. Oliver created these lozenges as a pharmacist looking to get in on the apothecary lozenges craze as a remedy for sore throats or bad breath, according to Mental Floss.

The candy gained popularity with the name Sweethearts and over time, the candy sayings have changed based on pop culture. From mid February to January the company produces about 100,000 pounds of candy hearts each day.

Sweethearts have evolved over time and can now be bought in a variety of versions: in Spanish, tart flavor, sugar-free and chocolate.

The sayings

The original candies had messages like, "Who Me, Luv U, Be Good, Kiss Me and Sweet Talk." Fast forward to present day and you can find hearts with sayings like, "Wicked Cool, Txt Me, Tweet, #Love, Wink Wink, Ur Hot, Call Me and even Marry Me." 

Those sayings not good enough? You can make your own. Personalized custom conversation love heart candies and mints are totally a thing. Not quite what you're looking for? ScriptureCandy.com even sells bible verses with references from John 3:16. You'll find sayings like, "God Loves You," "Praise God," "Faith, Hope, Love." 

The sayings have truly evolved over the years. During anniversaries NECCO brought back a few of the old sayings that were once popular. Go here to see 10+ years of conversation hearts.

Wanna send someone an e-heart candy? Yeah, you can do that too with a custom saying of your choice.

The variety

NECCO isn’t the only company to make and sell these heart-shaped candies. Brach's makes a variation of them with size and flavors from sweet and sour to berry to tropical fruit. SweetTarts even makes a version. NECCO details how they make their candy hearts on their website. Sugar, corn syrup, cornstarch, flavors, gums and colors are mixed together until they turn into dough.

Tell us how you really feel

One thing is certain, you either really love the candies or you really hate them. *cue social media reaction*

© 2018 WFAA-TV


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