10 Skittles Facts That You Never Realized

10 Skittles Facts That You Never Realized

August 6, 2019 100 By William Morgan


Skittles are the second most popular candy
in America, trailing behind only Starburst.
Chances are you probably just shove them in
your mouth without thinking about anything
other than how delicious they are. However,
there’s a lot more than meets the eye when
it comes to these chewy little balls of happiness. So,
grab a handful of Skittles and get ready to
be surprised by some of these facts. Here
are 10 Skittles facts you never realized.
Yogurt Covered Skittles
We already know that in the last decade or
so, Skittles have come up with some new and
creative innovations. You’ve got sour Skittles,
tropical, orchard, wild berry, and much more.
That’s just some of the flavors you can get. Well,
we’ve got some exciting news for you. Skittles
is about to release yogurt covered Skittles,
called Skittles Dips. From what we’ve gathered,
each bag will contain the original red, yellow,
green, orange, and purple colors covered in
a hard yogurt coating. Just like yogurt coated
raisins, but better (and more sugary). You
won’t really know what flavor you’re grabbing,
but that just adds a little more mystery to
life. Recently, some news leaked on Reddit
that a user had gotten ahold of this new Skittles
invention after they posted a picture of a
package of yogurt covered Skittles asking
if anyone knew where to find them. The package
in the photo contains a label that says, “this
unit not labeled for individual retail sale.”
The poster’s neighbor was an employee at Mars
Wrigley and had pulled the old employee five-finger
discount to sneak them home. It seems as though
they’re still in the development phase in
the U.S. However, if you happen to be in
the U.K., you can try them now. They’ve already
been released there, according to Instagram.
And apparently, they are delicious. For now,
we’ll just have to imagine what our life will
be like after these make it to U.S. shelves.
A Skittle With A Missing “S”
There’s a reason you will never see a Skittle
without its signature “S.” That’s because
if it’s missing, those candies don’t make
it into the bag. Every single Skittle has
an “S” on it as part of the brand’s quality
control system. These candies go through the
assembly line and are scanned to make sure
they all have it on their little shell. However,
since Skittles produces a lot of candy per
day, it can be really difficult to check every
single one. So, what do they do? They check
one Skittle out of a certain number produced,
usually every thousand, to see if it looks
right. If it doesn’t, that whole batch of
thousands gets destroyed. These people mean
business when it comes to quality control. There
are some conspiracies about where these Skittle
rejects go. In 2017, a truck spilled an abundance
of red Skittles that were missing their signature
letters all over a highway in Wisconsin. After
doing a little research, the Wisconsin police
concluded that these Skittles were actually
from a truck that was on its way to a farm
to deliver livestock feed. One of the representatives
for Mars later confirmed that the company
does sell unused products to third-party clients,
who mix them with other materials and then
sell them to farmers as livestock feed. But
Mars doesn’t sell the Skittles directly to
the farmers. Hey, if people love Skittles,
why wouldn’t cows?
The “S” Floats Away
All great stories start with people on the
Internet, right? In this case, Internet users
began posting about the mysterious things
that were happening when they put Skittles
candies in various liquids. The “S” would
float right off. So, as to why this happens,
there’s real science involved here. The “S”
letters are printed onto the candies separately
after the hard shell has developed. They’re
made with a non-water soluble ink, which is
then attached to the candy using a certain
type of edible glue. Now, the dye used to
make the actual candies is water soluble,
so if you try this experiment at home, you
should know that water-dissolving Skittles
look disgusting. You’re going to just end
up with a bunch of soggy, colorless pieces
of sugar floating in rainbow water. But it’s
fun to see that “S” floating around like it’s
got a mind of its own. This apparently works
with M&Ms as well, as the “M” is made using
the same concept that Skittles uses. For M&Ms,
it’s all related to their whole “melt in your
mouth, but not your hand” concept. These candies
are protected by the candy coating, which
has higher soluble rates and won’t melt as
fast.
Skittles Went Colorless For Pride Month
As almost everyone who doesn’t live under
a rock knows, Skittles’ slogan is “taste the
rainbow.” The candy is known for its signature
rainbow blend of colorful candies. But for
Pride Month, which is June, the company removed
all colors from their packaging and their
product. They stated in a press release that
they chose to do this because “there is only
one rainbow that matters” during the month
of June. They started this in 2016, but have
been continuing the trend every year since.
It originally started in London, but quickly
caught on with their products in North America
as well. When they originally came out with
this campaign, they were donating proceeds
per bag sold to LGBTQ organizations. Of course,
as with many marketing campaigns these days,
Skittles did receive a bit of criticism alongside
plenty of praise on social media. Some people
claimed that making the Skittles all white
was a form of racism, while others claimed
that they were trying to capitalize on the
LGBTQ community’s issues and/or profit from
them. Meanwhile, others complained that they
were now unable to sort through and pick out
the colors they don’t like. However, for every
bit of criticism, the company was praised
and commended for their dedication on a larger
scale. Removing the rainbow isn’t the only
way that Skittles has been involved in celebrating
Pride. On June 22 2019, Skittles Canada was
involved in facilitating four LGBTQ weddings.
The weddings took place in the newly created
Skittles Hall of Rainbows in downtown Toronto,
Ontario. Shangela, best known for being a
three-time contestant on Ru Paul’s Drag Race,
was the MC for this event. Skittles has also
partnered with three different LGBTQ-friendly
summer camps in Canada and has pledged to
send at least 150 LGBTQ Canadian children
to these camps this summer.
Yellow Skittles Are The Most Common
According Internet investigators, there are
always more yellow Skittles in each bag than
any other color. This is a major theory floating
around with Skittles enthusiasts (and really,
who isn’t a Skittles enthusiast?). Now that
you think about it, though, you’re probably
realizing this is pretty true. Open up a bag
of original Skittles and you’ll likely be
overwhelmed by all the yellow. There have
actually been people who have conducted some
studies on this by buying bags and keeping
track of the average number of each candy
color. Now that’s a research project we’re
on board with. It also seems to be a general
consensus with consumers that this is the
least liked flavor in the whole bag, so you
can see why this would be a topic of interest
for many people. These online Skittles investigators
cited a video as proof that the yellow Skittles
are invasive. In the video, you can see that,
despite the fact that each color of Skittle
gets created separately and then mixed in
by its own stream, the yellows seem to keep
ending up mixed in with the other colors.
If you look closely, you can see little yellow
ones sticking out with the green and red ones.
On top of that, they have their own stream
of pure yellow Skittles. So they’re coming
in from more sources and essentially taking
over the bag. Of course, there are also other
theories on why there are more yellow Skittles
in a bag. Some people have attributed it to
the company’s attempts to cut costs on ordering
different colored dyes. Others have implored
some kind of food-related color psychology
where the brighter yellow colors make the
customer want to eat more. Or, Skittles could
just be trolling all of us. Whatever the reason,
it’s really not enough to make us stop loving
Skittles.
America’s Fav Came From England
That’s right. Skittles were originally an
import from the U.K., made by a company based
in England. They were created in 1974. In
1979, the first Skittles hopped the pond and
made their way to the mouths of Americans,
who were instantly hooked. By 1982, Skittles
production began to emerge in America. Skittles
are now owned by Virginia-based candy conglomerate
Mars Inc. and produced in a Wrigley factory
in Illinois. There are also plenty of unique
and different flavors of Skittles, from tropical
to ice cream sundae to sweet heat. Now, you
can taste much more than the basic rainbow. As
for the name, there are no confirmed theories,
but some people have linked it to the origins
of the word. In Victorian England, skittles
was a pub game associated with drinking beer,
which was essentially a type of bowling. Players
would take a sphere-shaped object called a
cheese and throw it at pins to knock them
over. People would play this in bars like
they would play billiards or darts now. The
brand name then, could have originally been
used to promote casual, playful fun energy
that is still associated with the candies
today.
Wacky Skittles Creation Theory
So, we know they were invented in England.
But no one actually knows how or why, or who
did it. While it was probably just something
that a company employee thought up, there’s
a funny creation theory out there that is
a little bit… peculiar. The theory revolves
around a British man named Mr. Skittles. No
other facts about him are available, so use
your imagination to picture him. Mr. Skittles
was looking up at a rainbow one day when he
wondered what a rainbow would taste like.
So, Skittles were born. Of course, there
are a lot of loopholes in that story. For
one, the whole “taste the rainbow” thing wasn’t
developed until the 1990s. Also, this is clearly
an absurd, far fetched internet theory, and
it is much more widely believed that Skittles
were derived from the British candy Glees,
made all the way back in the 1960’s, which
are very similar to the Skittles we’ve come
to know and love today. But hey, feel free
to keep believing the Mr. Skittles theory!
They’ve Been Winning the Social Media Game
For Years Now
Skittles is one of the most liked brand pages
on Facebook, with over 20 million total likes.
They repeatedly nail the social media game
with their colorful images and sassy-yet-funny
captions that sometimes have nothing to do
with their candy products. The company actually
once “broke” a small part of the Internet
with a social media campaign they were running.
Back in 2009, Skittles decided to change the
homepage of their website to a live feed of
interactions with their company on various
social media platforms. This included people
mentioning the brand, hashtagging them, talking
about them, commenting, and anything that
mentioned the company name. However, people
began using this to flood the feed with profanity,
competitor links, and inappropriate conversations,
because, the internet, of course. They actually
still currently use a similar set-up, but
its clearly more curated and “skittles centric”
content. Either way, it was a great publicity
stunt and got them tons of attention, winning
all around.
It Takes About Eight Hours to Make a Skittle
In the Skittles factory, it takes about eight
hours to fully coat the chewy center with
the hard candy shell and finish up the candy.
Of course, they don’t just do one at a time.
In fact, over 200 million Skittles are produced
every single day–clearly they’ve nailed down
the batching method. So, how does it happen?
First, the chewy, fruity centers are created
in large batches of each color. It’s basically
like a fruity toffee that gets rolled into
the circular shape. Then, those chewy centers
are tumbled through the machine and coated
with the hard sugar shell. This process is
called “panning.” After the shells go on,
the candies go through a polishing stage where
they get shiny. When they’re polished and
ready go to, they get blended together using
a system that distributes a certain amount
at a time to create that rainbow of colors.
The last step in the process includes adding
that signature “S,” which gets printed on
using a special machine designed to ensure
that the sugar shell stays intact.
Skittles Has One of the Longest-Running Ad
Campaigns Ever
When you think about Skittles, you really
do think about their visual imagery of tasing
the rainbow and of all the colors and flavors
coming together. Who could forget those classic,
yet startlingly strange, commercials where
objects would suddenly burst into piles of
tiny colorful candies!? If you’re in the mood
to get nostalgic for Skittles, someone made
a compilation video on YouTube of the best
“taste the rainbow” commercials. The “taste
the rainbow” slogan seems to have been around
forever, and nearly everyone on this planet
knows it. That’s no accident. This classic
Skittles slogan was invented in 1994 as part
of an ad campaign developed by a New York
ad agency called D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles.
And it’s been running strong ever since. That’s
over 20 years. At the time that they made
this campaign, they also came up with the
brand logos and packaging that haven’t changed
a bit since. The commercials and images may
have changed, but it’s always been about the
rainbow.
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