Smarties: New Jersey’ iconic Halloween candy

Posted: Updated:
UNION TOWNSHIP -

An iconic Halloween candy is made right here in New Jersey.

Smarties, the tablet-shaped fruity candy, is made in a Union Township factory that is owned by fifth-generation candy makers.

The company was started in 1949 by Edward Dee, a third-generation candy maker, who emigrated from England. Dee started making Smarties in New Jersey with a machine used to compress gunpowder in to pellets. It was not much different from how they are still made today.

12 EXTRA: Watch interview with Smarties co-president Liz Dee

Ever since Smarties became a nationally recognized favorite, the Dee family has had offers from big corporations looking to buy them out. But the family has refused.

“We say the same thing every time, Smarties Candies isn't for sale,” say co-president Liz Dee. “We're proud to be here, based in New Jersey, a privately held company that's family-owned and -run."

The factory churns out billions of the candies 24 hours a day, six days a week.

With customers seeking candy that's lower in calories and free of allergens like peanuts or gluten, Dees say that Smarties sales are as strong as ever.

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