Halloween as we know is officially back — and better than ever, according to Hershey’s (HSY).
The candy giant noted strong sales heading into the final days of Halloween in its recent third quarter earnings call. President and CEO Michele Buck called this Halloween season “very strong” and “the biggest” in Hershey’s 127-year history, with anticipation for trick or treaters to be out in full force this Sunday, which may reach pre-pandemic levels.
Buck noted the company expects “very strong double-digit growth on top of the strength that we had last year” this Halloween. Category sales in the early and mid-season were up 18% compared to 2020, and increased 12% compared to 2019 levels.
Meanwhile, America’s hunger for chocolate has driven up sales of branded Hershey Halloween candy, like the REESEʼS Halloween milk chocolate peanut butter pumpkins, up 14% from 2020 — and have spiked 23% in the past two years.
In all, Hershey’s noted it retained approximately 75% of the gains made during the 2020 Halloween season, and expects the same strength this holiday season with the lineup it revealed in September.
As far as fulfilling the all-time high demand, Buck noted current supply strain is expected to “hit every aspect of the business” making Halloween no different.
Steve Voskuil, Hershey’s CFO, weighed in on the growth made in 2020 in an interview with Yahoo Finance earlier this year. He called last year “a record setter” for the company with “high expectations” for this Halloween.
“We think seasons is one of those areas ….its kind-of become a special place of celebrating those family traditions, sometimes in different ways than we did in the past…this will be an interesting Halloween to see what traditions from pre-COVID carry over,” Voskuil added.
Meanwhile the competition is on for which candy trick or treaters will snatch up first.
According to new data from social media analytics company Sprout Social (SPT), candy bar Snickers, which is owned by Mars, sits at the helm of consumers’ favorites as the number one Halloween candy. That’s followed by Candy Corn, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, then Mars-owned Twix and Skittles.
Brooke DiPalma is a producer and reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter at @BrookeDiPalma or email her at email@example.com.
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