Parents Discuss Balance and Moderation with Children at Halloween



Three-Quarters of Americans Celebrate the Holiday with Candy

WASHINGTON (Oct. 12, 2016) – Nearly 90 percent of parents will use Halloween as an opportunity to talk to their children about moderation as it relates to candy, according to a new survey released by the National Confectioners Association. The survey also revealed that up to 77 percent of Americans are likely to purchase candy to participate in traditional Halloween activities this year. Chocolate, small packages and Halloween-themed confections are among the items likely to be spotted in shopping carts this year.

Halloween Candy“American candy makers are pleased to share in the joys of Halloween,” said NCA President and CEO John Downs. “We know Americans will enjoy our treats in moderation as they do throughout the year. Our companies make confections in communities across the United States that invoke feelings of nostalgia and generate excitement with innovation and new flavors. These treats are often the centerpiece of holiday traditions.”

NCA estimates that Americans will spend $2.7 billion on sweet treats this Halloween – revenue that helps support the 55,000 people directly employed by candy makers and 410,000 additional Americans whose jobs rely in part on the sale of confections. Despite this important economic boost, the new NCA survey shows that Americans are continuing to enjoy candy responsibly with 4 out 5 people agreeing that it’s perfectly fine to enjoy Halloween candy in moderation.

The survey’s other findings include:

Exercising Moderation by Sharing
The vast majority of Americans (85 percent) give out miniature- or snack-size candy at Halloween. These little treats make enjoying candy in moderation easier for the 80 percent of people that believe we should have candy on Halloween so long as we do so as part of a balanced lifestyle.

Monitoring the Candy Stash
Parents certainly get in on the sharing during Halloween, with 72 percent saying they sample their children’s Halloween stashes whether the children know it or not. Eighty-five percent of parents have a plan for helping their children enjoy candy in moderation in the days after Halloween. Some (37 percent) establish a specific number of pieces their children can have each day, while others (26 percent) take full responsibility as gatekeeper by doling out the candy themselves. Other tactics include agreeing to an overall amount of candy children can keep or setting guidelines based on a general calorie count.

Chocolate Remains America’s Favorite
Chocolate in all its varieties is the star of Halloween, with 68 percent of people saying it is their favorite Halloween treat. Traditional Halloween candy corn comes in second with 10 percent enjoying it the most. Chewy candy is preferred by 7 percent of people, as is gummy candy. The remaining 9 percent includes everyone who named another type candy as their favorite including gum or mints, lollipops, caramels and licorice. More than one quarter of adults noted that their favorite candy has changed over time. Regardless of candy type, 60 percent of Americans prefer their confections in Halloween wrappers or packaging.

For more information about candy and Halloween, including moderation tips and recipes, please visit

Survey Methodology
NCA’s 2016 Seasonal Survey was conducted by 210 Analytics, LLC using a database comprised of several million respondents who have agreed to participate in survey research. Interviews took place using a self-administered, online questionnaire. To maintain the reliability and integrity in the sample, each invitation contained a password that is uniquely assigned to that email address and must be entered at the beginning of the survey. Web-assisted interviewing software is used to control quotas in order to mirror the census profile in terms of key demographics such as age, income, region and other factors. The survey was completed by 1,391 individuals in October 2016. The margin of error is +/-2.7%.

# # #

The National Confectioners Association is the trade organization that advances, protects and promotes chocolate, candy, gum and mints, and the companies that make these special treats. As the leading association for the $35 billion U.S. confectionery industry, NCA educates the public to help ensure that it understands and appreciates the unique role that chocolate and candy can play in a happy, balanced lifestyle. Confections are produced in all 50 states, creating jobs for approximately 55,000 workers in more than 1,000 manufacturing facilities across the country. More than 400,000 jobs in agriculture, retail, transportation and other industries rely in part on the sale of confections for their livelihood. For every one job that is created by confectionery companies, another seven are supported in related industries. Learn more about the “Power of Sweet” at, or follow NCA on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

– 30 –

BLUEPRINT COMMUNICATIONS: Laura Christof, 571-414-0730, [email protected]
NCA: Susan Whiteside, 202-534-1440, [email protected]