NECCO Wafers predate the Civil War.
The Metropoulos family, known for turning around nostalgic household names like Hostess Brands and Chef Boyardee, is buying the maker of Necco wafers after a sale of the company behind the chalky treats to an Ohio candy maker fell apart.
Based in Revere, Mass., Necco is the oldest operating candy company in the U.S. Among the treats it makes are seasonal Sweetheart Conversation Hearts, Candy Buttons, Mary Jane candies and Clark bars.
In 2013 Mr. Metropoulos acquired the Twinkies brand and other Hostess staples through a bankruptcy deal in a move that kept the sweets on store shelves. His firm has invested in other sweet-and-salty staples such as Ghirardelli Chocolate Co., Mrs. Butterworth’s syrups and Utz potato chips, among others.
The Necco Wafer is candy people love to hate, triggering happy childhood memories for some while leaving little more than a chalky aftertaste for others.
The flavors have been described as “tropical drywall,” “plaster surprise,” and “attic citrus.” One Twitter commentator calls it a candy that “only a psychopath would like.”
The original recipe of Necco Wafers hasn’t changed, according to the company. It is a mix of sugar, corn syrup, gelatins, gums, colorings and flavorings that include chocolate, licorice, cinnamon, lemon, lime, orange, wintergreen and clove. The company produces about four billion each year.
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