In Britain, we grow up calling many types of sugary snacks “sweets”. Chocolate is usually included in this title, and the various lollipops, chocolate bars, sherbet dips, and other good things that line the aisles of our corner shops and supermarkets are enticing, to say the least.
However, as the children of Britain get older, they are introduced to new foods from around the world. The last decade or so has seen a huge rise in the popularity of imported candy and sweets, particularly candy from America. But what makes American candy so different to sweets in Britain?
American sweets aren’t usually as rich in taste as their British counterparts (with caramel and taffy being two exceptions). There are many reasons for this, but let’s just look at chocolate as an example for now. In Britain, for something to be considered chocolate, there must be a minimum of 20% cocoa solids – but in America, it’s 10%. Britain’s sweet makers focus on taste, while American candy uses more sugar for sweetness.
The main difference that you’ll find between American candy and British sweets is the variation that is available in store. Most sweet or candy brands are based over in America, so products from M&M, Hershey’s, Reese’s, and even the humble and delicious Oreo, all have many more types of their brands available in America.
Because these companies are based in America, it’s easier for them to develop their brand there. And though Britain has its own sweet companies (Cadbury, for example), the popularity of American candy means that stores have been importing them for consumers. Of course, importing costs a fair bit, so it’s only natural that any supermarket or corner shop or even sweet shop (like Mr. Simms) would only stock flavours that are sure to be brought.
To answer the question of this post, American candy is any sweet or chocolate product that is produced in America. For those of us in Britain, the easiest way to buy these delightful products is to either buy a subscription box (which allows us to have a range of candy and other American products at a reasonable price) or buy them in-store. The downside of buying American imported candy in stores is that it’s usually quite expensive. Which means that subscription box services are typically the best way to try lots of new things without the high price tag attached.