Global Halloween celebrations marked by ‘spooktacularly’ fine confectionery treats
Celebrations for this year’s Halloween are getting under way around the world, with considerable enthusiasm for the occasion within the confectionery sector, which is anticipated to perform especially strongly this year with a raft of special spooky creations emerging, writes Neill Barston.
As previously reported, in the US, which has led the way in terms of an elaborate array of festivities for 31 October, with around $6 billion sales in candy experienced last year, with analysts predicting that 2023 will likely deliver even more of a financial boost for the industry.
Meanwhile, within Europe, for its part, Germany’s BDSI confectionery sector trade body has noted that the nation’s industry has moved to create some spooktacular delights this year, with manufacturers delivering a huge range of confectionery, with designs centred on classic pumpkins, bats, spiders, monster eyes, ghosts, vampires or skeletons, with gummies and chocolate reportedly particularly popular. There has also been a reported demand for ghost-shaped and monster-themed snacks as a central part of seasonal festivities.
Notably, as the BDSI cited, market research institute Nielsen has determined that German sales of Halloween confectionery in 2022 were around €16.8 million (+1.9% compared to 2021). Around 58% of sales came from sugar confectionery (€9.8 million), around 42% from chocolate products (€7.0 million). The BDSI expects a comparable sales volume for 2023. However, the actual sales of confectionery around Halloween are likely to be significantly higher, as the majority of the confectionery distributed in Germany at Halloween is so-called all-year-round items.
“Even if Halloween is still a niche in terms of total sales, the confectionery industry’s wealth of ideas and forms is particularly evident here, true to the motto ‘trick or treat’,” says Dr. Carsten Bernoth, General Manager of the BDSI.
The celebration of Halloween stems from All Hallows’ Eve, traditionally marked on the evening and night before All Saints’ Day, from October 31st to 1 November, with customary celebrations being widespread in Catholic Ireland, which was adopted by many immigrants from the country as they moved to the US, where the season is the most popular celebration alongside Christmas and Valentine’s Day.
Among the many intriguing product releases this Halloween, gourmet British brand, Popcorn Shed has released its latest Letterbox Gift, which offers a key way to add heaps of fun and flavour to your Halloween celebrations, filled wit a bewitching blend of the brand’s award-winning popcorn flavours, including a limited edition ‘Halloween Mix’ with brightly coloured orange and green kernels in a vanilla caramel variety.
The business started up in 2016 when founders and cousins Sam and Laura started experimenting with popcorn recipes in Laura’s mother’s kitchen. As recipe development continued to create the perfect tasting popcorn, so did the mess and they were banished to the garden shed in Laura’s mother’s back garden. The family started referring to the shed as the ‘Popcorn Shed’, which has grown considerably over the past few years, offering a total of 30 flavours within its ranges
For its part, malt loaf brand Soreen’s spooktacular limited-edition Halloween Scream multipacks include both Cherry Jellies and Toffee Apple flavours, packed full of devilish delight. The ‘Cherry-fying’ Jellies are loaded with chopped cherry flavoured jellies, and there’s also a surprise jelly centre to delight the taste buds with all the treat and no tricks. Also beware of Soreen’s additional terrifying Toffee Apple Scream flavour, which is bursting with apple and gooey flavoured toffee pieces, perfect for a healthy Halloween snack. Both of the spooky Scream range flavours come in the form of mini loaves with eye catching Halloween-themed packaging, all individually wrapped making them an easy snack to grab on-the-go or as a sweet after dinner treat. What’s more, they’re also under 101 calories per bar, making for a truly satisfying but healthier treat.
Liz Jacobs, Marketing Director at Soreen commented: “Many shoppers say that health is important to them when it comes to purchasing around Halloween, but some may say that given it’s a season associated with treating, it can be challenge. However, it doesn’t have to be a challenge.
“Our Halloween range features highly impressive health credentials without a taste compromise! The beauty of these snacks for parents is that they are delicious and treat-like for children, but also highly convenient as they are HFSS compliant, a great source of fibre and low in saturated fat. Therefore, an ideal healthy treat and a great alternative to sweets over the Halloween period. Plus, as they’re vegan friendly they can also be enjoyed by those who need to follow a dairy free diet.
“Retailers are now dedicating more space to Halloween in store and expanding their offering so we know this is a popular time and we can continue to refine and grow our range in line with this. As sugar and fat content in diets continues to be scrutinised, our unique offering of squidgy, HFSS delicious mini loaves that are healthier than sugary confectionery has widened our appeal with consumers and retailers alike, unlike many other sweet treats.
For something else ghoulishly good, UK retailer Iceland is serving up a host of delights for Halloween, including its Halloween Cookies & Scream Cheesecake to Ice Cream Pumpkins – and a half price offer on the Swizzels 600g Sweet Treat Tub, as part of its wider range of seasonal treats.
“We know the cost-of-living crisis has affected households massively this year, and that’s why we’ve offered as many deals as we can so that family and friends can celebrate Halloween without delving too deep into their wallets. Whether our customers fancy a trick, or favour one of our many treats available at value prices, our 3 for £5 and 3 for £10 are some of the ways we’re trying to go that extra mile.” said Andrew Staniland, Group Buying Director at Iceland Foods & The Food Warehouse.