Where are people opting to give out saltwater taffy to trick-or-treaters?

By Mike Pomranz
September 30, 2019
mediaphotos/Getty Images

The grass is always greener on the other side, and during Halloween, the candy is always better across the stateline. For 2019, the candy data team at CandyStore.com once again crunched the numbers to determine the Most Popular Halloween Candy by State—and probably the most surprising result was how diverse the list is.

Across 50 states and the District of Columbia, 20 different candies ended up topping at least one state. Skittles was the top candy for the most states—and is the best-selling Halloween candy in the U.S. overall, according to CandyStore.com—but even then, Skittles only led in seven states.

Source: CandyStore.com.

Here's the full list (with numbers of states they topped in parenthesis):

  • Skittles (7)
  • candy corn (5)
  • Reese’s Cups (5)
  • Hot Tamales (4)
  • Starbursts (4)
  • Twix (3)
  • Tootsie Pops (3)
  • saltwater taffy (3)
  • Hershey’s Mini Bars (2)
  • Milky Way (2)
  • Jolly Ranchers (2)
  • Double Bubble Gum (2)
  • M&M’s (2)
  • Kit Kat, Swedish Fish, Lemonheads, Butterfinger, Sour Patch Kids, Snickers, and Blow Pops (1 each)

If you're thinking some of those candies seem unexpected, you’re not alone. Saltwater taffy, for instance, was tops in Washington (which, sure, is coastal), but was also the best-selling candy in the very landlocked states of Nebraska and Wyoming—results that even CandyStore.com referred to as a “surprise.” Meanwhile, Swedish fish seems like an unlikely winner for Kentucky.

Related: How to Make a Party Pumpkin: Watch!

So where do they get this data? “We looked at 12 years of sales data (2007-2018), looking in particular at the months leading up to Halloween,” the site wrote. “We sell nationwide (and to Canada) so we broke down our sales by state. We also have relationships with major candy manufacturers and distributors—all of whom contributed and helped us reach our conclusions.”

Another important fact, all the sales are ranked in “pounds”—not in dollar value or product count—meaning the list is slightly weighted (pun) towards heavier candies. (Take that, circus peanuts!) It also means these results are strictly based on sales data: Popular opinion or, possibly even more importantly, any indication as to what people actually hand out and consume on Halloween isn’t included.

So are we really to believe that if you go trick-or-treating in Wyoming, the most likely candy to end up in your sack is saltwater taffy? Well, there’s one other way to find out: Walk around and see how many houses got TP-ed… That should give you some indication.

Advertisement