Styling and Photography by Laurie Mosco
Decreasing stay-at-home orders, increasing vaccine availability, and rising temps have everyone yearning for sandy shores, majestic views, and the open road. Expect to see more travelers this summer at a tourist destination near you. Early predictions by Travel Agent Central find 60% of travelers plan to travel even more than they did in pre-quarantine 2019. All that sightseeing works up an appetite. We feel a warm front of fun, vibrant, and flavorful candies coming to your shelves.
American travelers spent $219 billion on food services, including restaurants/grocery in 2019, according to the US Travel Organization. With more Americans expected to travel than in previous years, expect that total to be even higher. Don’t let the opportunity bus leave you behind. Come on a guided tour of our favorite snack attractions for any summer seasonal business.
When on vacation, customers want to immerse themselves in what makes their travel destination unique, whether it be the ocean, forest, wetlands, or city skylines. But they can’t spend all their time outdoors, so lure them inside by sprinkling confection versions of the local sights in your confection selection.
If you’re based in the Northeast, then hand poured lollipops in the iconic shape of a lobster from Melville Candy Company or whimsical lobster shaped mint tin from AmuseMints will be the catch of any vacation day. For those warmer destinations in the south and on the West Coast, confections that pull in the colors and local wildlife like Clever Candy Gummy Starfish or Boston America’s Flamingo Pool Party Tin will be the “flock” stars of your seasonal section. No matter the destination, add to the merri-MINT with mint tins in quintessential vacation shapes like flip flops, surf boards, and tropical fish from AmuseMints.
Vacations are all about fun so when a toy, candy, and destination can be combined like Gator Chomp Candy Lollipops’ lollipop and holder with extending chomping gator head, it’ll get snapped up quickly. Animals are always an attraction that customers enjoy, so AmuseMints’ graphically-rich peg bags featuring everything from turtles, to bears, to even bigfoot filled with candy favorites like gummies, candy buttons, and candy corn are sure to turn heads. If a countertop attraction is more appealing, then wow them with handcrafted Melville Candy Zoo Lollipops in a menagerie of shapes like giraffe, elephant, and monkey.
Like travel hot spots that tourists return to again and again, there are summer candy destinations they return to, too. One favorite, particularly if they’re snacking seaside, is salt water taffy. Chewy, gooey, full of brilliant colors, and individually wrapped so it can be enjoyed while on the go, nostalgic salt water taffy creates an attraction right in your bulk displays. Take the classic up a notch by injecting vacation-inspired flavors like, tropical punch, coconut, mango, pineapple, and passion fruit like Taffy Town’s Tropical Blend. Classic summer snacks re-imagined, like the fruity snow cone flavors in Project 7 Rainbow Ice gum is something that they’ll write home about too. It’s portable for snacking while taking in the sights, so it’s a must-have for vacationers!
Travelers snap lots of pics, so colorful, iconic summer snacks instantly come into their focus. Rainbow twists of oversized anything are picture-perfect, like the large rainbow loops of Whirly Pops or the long twists of Pennsylvania Dutch Twist Pops and Unicorn Pops. Full of the sweet feelings of nostalgia, and oh so colorful, customers can’t help themselves, they have to take a selfie for their feed.
Tourists travel with all the senses, sight, touch, smell – even taste. Keep them in vacation-mode a little longer by filling your selection with summertime flavors. They’ll lose their “rinds” over sweet and tangy forms of the classic summertime fruit, watermelon. Add shimmering, sugar-coated Nassau Candy Watermelon Fruit Slices, or daring and bold Sour Patch Kids Watermelon sour gummies. Think outside the candy wrapper and offer them watermelon refreshment with Jones Watermelon Soda. Sweet as sunshine – oranges! No one can resist the classic summertime dessert the Creamsicle. Serve it up in a bubbly beverage O-Zell Orange DreamSicle Soda.
An umbrella beverage is a vacation must. Sweet tropical vibes and fun fruit flavors. With 46 million travelers planning on RVing this year, according to Travel Agent Central, they’re going to want those flavors in a more portable option (and since they are driving, no alcohol). Have a selection of sweets overflowing with the flavors of paradise. For the sour fans, there’s Sour Patch Kids Tropical coated in crunchy sanding sugar and full of exotic flavors like paradise punch, pineapple, tropical twist, and passion fruit. Those looking for their candy to last through the long hall on the open road, will floor it for hard candies with a tropical slant like Jolly Rancher Tropical. Those looking for a mix of chewy and crunchy will love to take a winding snack detour with Airhead Bites in Paradise Blends, featuring a crunchy candy shell and classic chewy Airheads soft center featuring exotic flavors.
Fit for Fun in the Sun
While some like to indulge during vacation, 2021 has also brought with it an increased focus on health and wellness. That doesn’t mean tourists will give up on the sweet snacking fun. Supply them with better-for-you candies featuring classic summertime flavors. For those with a sweet spot for sour gummies, there’s SmartSweets Sourmelon Bites, with lip-puckering sour watermelon flavor, and only 3 grams of sugar per serving. Classic gummy fish with no artificial ingredients like Wholesome! Delish Fish are quite a catch. If they’re following a Vegan lifestyle, then there’s Torrie & Howard Meyer Lemon and Raspberry Fruities fruit chews, full of organic ingredients and nothing artificial, while serving up the sweet and tart taste of raspberry lemonade.
This isn’t the end of the tour. See our whole selection of summer season goodies!