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Going Batty over Chocolate!

imagesChocolate is big business, and Halloween is its biggest holiday. According to a recent survey from the National Confectioners Association, 72% of all candy spending this Halloween will be on chocolate. Last year, more than $12.6 billion was spent on chocolate in the United States. The chocolate industry is extremely concentrated among just a few competitors. Either Hershey (HSY) or Mars owns each of the 10 best-selling chocolate brands. In the past year, Hershey made close to half of all standard-sized chocolate sales in dollars, and Mars accounted for nearly 38% of sales. Only one other company made two of the 20 most popular products, Nestle’s Butterfinger and Nestle’s Crunch.

Most top-selling chocolate brands have been long-time consumer favorites. The nation’s oldest top-seller, Hershey’s brand chocolate, has been available since 1900. Here is a fun look at the top 5 favorites among Halloween candy:

  • Reese’s is the most popular and also leads in sales of snack-sized packages.
  • M&M’s, who is the second highest selling regular size candy, may not see the same sales boost other candy makers see during the Halloween season because it ranks only eighth among brands in snack-sized sales.
  • Snickers, who has been around since 1930, has made a major advertising push in recent years with its celebrity-filled, “You’re not you when you’re hungry,” campaign. The first commercial in the campaign, which aired during the 2010 Super Bowl, featured actress Betty White getting tackled in a backyard football game, was an instant sensation.
  • Hershey’s, who is planning to introduce its first new U.S. brand in 30 years called Lancaster Soft Cremes, is focusing on 10 new Halloween products this year including the Screme Egg, a twist on the Cadbury easter egg, is a chocolate egg with white filling, but with a green yolklike center instead of yellow.
  • Kit Kat who recently launched a co-promotion with Google, which code-named the most recent version of its Android operating system “KitKat” rounds out the group.

And by the way DYK that you have to walk at a moderate pace for 30 minutes to burn off the calories in one mini snickers bar. Happy indulging on this Halloween 2014 and as always stay #TopRight!

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