Vienna, VA – Less is more. Share and share alike. These phrases reflect a growing trend in the candy industry. Candy manufacturers are satisfying consumers' desires for flexibility by emphasizing moderation and portion control through smaller candies and re-sealable packaging.
Packages of bite-sized candies are on the shelves now, in anticipation of Halloween, but there is no need for parents to wait until October to enjoy their family's favorite treats. Smaller-sized candies enable consumers to eat a little at a time, and re-sealable packaging reminds consumers that each bag contains multiple servings, which helps parents and children alike observe the important dietary principle of moderation.
“There are so many ways that kids can enjoy candy, in moderation, as part of a balanced diet,” said Larry Graham, president, National Confectioners Association. “Whether it's a quick snack for your teen after school or a surprise in your grade school child's lunch box, when you balance sweets with regular meals, children can enjoy candy without over-indulging.”
Candy manufacturers are continuing to introduce more bite-sized candies that enable consumers to eat a little at a time. Many of these candies are individually wrapped, making them perfect to distribute piece by piece. Additionally, in recent years, candy manufacturers have introduced re-sealable bags of unwrapped, bite- sized candies that make it easier to serve some immediately and save some for later.
Some tips and ideas for parents during back-to-school season and throughout the year:
Not many kids open their lunchbox and say, “Oh no, another snack!” As kids go back to school this fall, parents can use the smaller, individually wrapped candies as unexpected surprises. Slip some into backpacks or lunch boxes.
Children like to choose their own snacks, and allowing them a degree of choice in their food selection is important in helping them learn to self-regulate their food intake. By providing a variety of snacks from which kids can choose, parents help them learn the important dietary concepts of balance and moderation. Stock a variety of snacks at home and help children learn to choose items like fruit, granola or carrot sticks followed by a small indulgence like a miniature candy bar.
There are no “good” or “bad” foods. All foods can fit in a balanced, healthful diet. To instill healthful eating patterns in your child, it is important to avoid giving foods negative or positive labels. Forbidding, as opposed to moderating, the intake of foods may only make them more desirable, encouraging a child to overeat those foods when given the opportunity. Practice moderation of candy intake with your children by allowing them to consume a few bite-sized pieces at a time of their favorite sweet treat.
It is not too much sugar, but eating too many calories and not exercising enough that cause children to become overweight. Re-sealable bags and bite-sized candies enable parents to dole out a few pieces at a time and help their children practice portion control.