The Stories Behind Banned Candies

Every Halloween, adults are prompted to reminisce about candies we loved that are no longer manufactured. Most of those are gone because of business decisions: either they didn’t sell well or the manufacturer is gone. But there have been candies that disappeared for more interesting reasons, like consumer complaints or even copyright infringement. You might think the Toxic Waste Nuclear Sludge Chew Bar shown here disappeared because it was in bad taste (or tasted bad), but the real reason is much more horrifying.

It came as little surprise to many when a candy called “Toxic Waste Nuclear Sludge Chew Bars” was recalled in 2011 for being, yes, toxic. Tests by the California Department of Public Health indicated that many of the bars had "elevated levels of lead"–approximately .24 parts per million, more than double the standard US FDA “tolerance” of .1 parts per million. Of course, lead poisoning can be fatal, especially in pregnant women and children under six years old.

As for the culprit, Indianapolis’ Candy Dynamics sold the candy (they are still in business), but it was manufactured in Pakistan, a country notorious for having lax safety and health standards. Luckily, no one reported becoming sick from the candy. The recall was self-imposed, out of what Candy Dynamics called "an abundance of caution."

Read the stories behind five other candy disappearances in a list at Atlas Obscura. 

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