Young teenagers and shy men will have to find another way to tell that special someone “Happy Valentine’s.” Those cute pastel-colored hearts with messages like “Be Mine,” “Cutie Pie,” and “Love You” typically gifted on Valentine’s Day won’t be on shelves this year.
The company that made these treasures, New England Confectionery Company (Necco), went out of business last year, and in July closed the factory. New England Confectionery Company has been sold to Spangler Candy Company, but not in time to produce the quantity of the heart-shaped candy needed for Valentine’s Day. Spangler took control of the company this past September (2018) but felt they did not have the time needed to produce enough product. In a normal year, it would take Necco 11 months to produce the 8 billion SweetHearts needed for the Valentine’s holiday. In a normal year, the full supply of 8 billion SweetHearts is generally sold in the 6 weeks before Valentine Day (February 14).
SweetHearts have been the most popular Valentine’s Day candy. According to confectionary.com reports, they generated over $1.8 billion dollars in sales last year. Current Spangler CEO, Kirk Vashaw, has promised that these popular treats will be back on shelves in time for Valentine’s Day 2020.
If you really depend on sweets for your sweet, please know that Hostess Pink Snowballs are on many stores’ shelves.
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Brachs makes the conversation hearts and yes, they are still in stores. I have eaten 3 bags already.
UPDATE: As mentioned in the comment below, local candy maker, Brachs, makes “conversation hearts” that are available in stores: