Chewing Gum And Bubble Gum

September 26, 2008

Invention and History Of Chewing Gum

It’s actually really hard to imagine that chewing gum is one of the oldest types of candy in the world. Archaeologists have actually found evidence that prehistoric men and women used to chew on tree resin because of the flavor it had. This was more than a thousand years ago. It was also discovered that almost all cultures chewed on some form of gum. Ancient Greeks called tree resin “mastiche” and chewed it to clean their teeth and freshen their breath.

Of course, chewing gum and bubble gum didn’t become commercialized in the United States until the mid 1800’s when the Curtis brothers invented gum from spruce tree resin. They charged one penny for two hunks and the popularity quickly spread. Bubble gum was invented by accident just a few decades later when Frank Fleer invented it. It later evolved into America’s first bubble gum, America’s Original Dubble Bubble Gum. Sales of bubble gum actually declined in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s because doctors actually told people to stop chewing bubble gum because they were afraid that it would make peoples’ intestines stick together. Of course, this theory was quickly disproved and gum got back on course. Sales continued to grow for chewing gum and have always remained strong throughout its history.

In 1951, The Topps company, which makes the popular ring pops kids enjoy so much these days, made bubble gum even more popular by pairing a stick of gum with a pack of baseball cards. This technique increased sales in both gum and baseball cards.

Today, bubble gums are made with sugar, corn syrup, flavorings, softeners and latex or plastic. Now, dubble bubble has a new product, America’s Original Dubble Bubble Gum – Fruitastic Flavors, which has also become a big hit among kids. The original color of gum, pink, is still the most popular color and now, sugarless gum is chewed for dental health reasons. Candy makers like the Willy Wonka also want a piece of the gum market and they are making new products that are similar to gum, like Wonka Laffy Taffy Long Lasting Chews. These are not nearly as popular as gum, but they allow candy companies to get by.

These days, Americans chew around three hundred sticks of gum a year and they love every minute of it. Of course, most gum is still purchased right before Halloween and before Christmas as well. This wonderful product as allowed us to keep our mouths busy for as long as we want. The taste isn’t bad either.

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