Hershey’s Kisses goodbye to using cocoa butter in its candy

22 Sep
photo courtesy of www.sugarstand.com

photo courtesy of http://www.sugarstand.com

Do you like Hershey’s Chocolate? Well if you do, then take heed: Hershey has removed cocoa butter from most of its line of candy bars and replaced it with vegetable oil.

So what, you say? Well, according to the FDA, Products such as Whatchamacallit, Hershey’s kisses and Krackel can’t legally be called milk chocolate bars anymore because of the lack of cocoa butter. Cocoa butter gives chocolate its disticntive creamy texture. Without it,  chocolate just tastes flat.

Hershey has fallen victim to the rise of the cost of goods.  The candy must be labeled chocolate candy,  chocolate flavored candy, or chocolaty.

I’m thinking about  making the switch to a higher end of chocolate for now,  until Hershey comes around.

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10 Responses to “Hershey’s Kisses goodbye to using cocoa butter in its candy”

  1. eatingthrough September 22, 2008 at 1:56 am #

    It’s wrong, wrong, wrong.

  2. culinarychick September 22, 2008 at 2:13 am #

    Yeah, I know.

    Hasn’t anyone figured out that some of us would rather pay more to have the same quality than pay the same for crap???

    I swear.

  3. Chocolate Candy Lover September 22, 2008 at 4:27 am #

    What horrid news! I live in Australia these days, so I only get to indulge my Hershey craving once a year when I make my annual visit to the US to see family.

    I dearly hope they switch back before my next visit.

    What were they thinking?!!!

  4. Dave September 22, 2008 at 11:30 am #

    Come on culinarychick. You are doing a great disservice here. “…most of its line of candy bars…”? We are talking a small percentage of product here. You even go on to name the bars in question, with errors there. Whatchamacallit? Big seller! Hershey Kisses are chocolate. The Kissables are different, but never tasted like a chocolate treat, anyhow. I see you didn’t list the big sellers, Hershey bar, Reese’s, KitKat. They are all STILL CHOCOLATE.

    • ange March 16, 2010 at 5:45 pm #

      ur rite dave

  5. culinarychick September 22, 2008 at 7:49 pm #

    Hi Dave,
    First of all, thanks for reading my blog! It’s always good to hear from new people.

    I first heard the report mentioned on the Today show. Here is a link:

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26788143/

    I always read several reports before I write this stuff down, and I did verify the veracity of the story through Pennlive.com, the online version of The Patriot News, a paper which services central Pennsylvania. Here is their link:

    http://www.pennlive.com/news/patriotnews/index.ssf?/base/news/1221922502100000.xml&coll=1

    I also visited Cybele May’s blog; Candy Blog to verify this story. She was the resident expert NBC used to bolster the report.

    In a nutshell, all of the candies I listed were included in the formula change; replacing vegetable oil for cocoa butter, except for the Kisses which is reportedly still made with milk chocolate. You were correct in that assessment and I stand corrected.

    In fact, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Almond Joy and the plain Hershey’s bar are still made with milk chocolate. When conducting a taste test, NBC found out that the public was split down the middle as far as taste went.

    My report said that the absence of cocoa butter in chocolate would leave the chocolate tasting flat. It does. The presence of cocoa butter gives chocolate a specific creamy texture. FDA regulation says that without the presence of cocoa butter, it cannot be called milk chocolate. Yes, it is still chocolate, but not milk chocolate. Some producers add other oils such as palm oil or coconut oil to mimic the texture of milk chocolate. It is still not milk chocolate, hence the basis of my report.

    In closing; for some of us, chocolate is still chocolate. For others, the difference between milk chocolate and regular chocolate is as wide as the difference between ground beef and Filet Mignon.

    They are both considered beef, aren’t they?

  6. cybele September 22, 2008 at 11:23 pm #

    Thanks for the kudos culinarychick. (It is just the Kissables though that were changed. Some Kisses in the Limited Edition varieties aren’t chocolate, but the classic ones still are.)

    Dave – while Hershey’s states that 85% of their line is still real chocolate they have not qualified how they arrive at the 85% mark (is that gross weight? Do they count every variation in the product size as a product?).

    Yes, it’s 9 out of the 24 “chocolate candy bars” that have changed. 37% is not a small percentage. (And it’s worse if you pick up a Hershey’s Miniatures package.)

    I don’t think it matters much that KitKats are still chocolate if that wasn’t your favorite. The fact that you didn’t like Kissables doesn’t change the fact that they were real chocolate at one time.

    The changed bars are: 5th Avenue, Reese’s Nutrageous, ReeseSticks, Take 5, Mr. Goodbar, Krackel, Milk Duds and Kissables. Also the White Chocolate Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup is now just “White” as the cocoa butter was removed from that product. Whoppers were never real chocolate and aren’t in my numbers.

    So your arugment is that because these bars aren’t as popular as the Hershey’s Milk Chocolate, it doesn’t matter if their quality is diminished?

  7. Dave September 24, 2008 at 1:10 pm #

    No, all I am saying is keep the context correct, and you’ll be better respected. The original post said “most of its line” when in fact it is a small percentage of the total products delivered. I am not weighing in on the vegetable vs cocoa issue. I am trying to say, don’t be an alarmist. Point out the changes, address your concerns, but don’t make it sound like the entire (or “most” of) Hershey lines have been changed. If it were pointed out that this affects 15% of production, maybe more people would be interested in helping to prevent a larger rollout… If you say “most” already, then people might think there is nothing they can do. Or worse yet, they might stop buying the “real” Hershey products, and put the company under. Would that help anyone here?

  8. Daniel B April 17, 2009 at 3:34 pm #

    I did my part and wrote to the FDA a while back protesting their pending decision to allow vegetable oil based candies to be labeled as “chocolate”.

    If Hershey’s has gone and taken the cocoa butter out of Mr. Goodbar and Krackel… that’s freaking huge. Seriously.

    The other candies less so, because their chocolate content was a much smaller portion of the morsel. But those two represent HALF of the miniatures line, which I have enjoyed since I was a kid.

    It’s a shame. And if you think they are going to switch back anytime soon, don’t hold your breath. If they are willing to change the formula AND take the labeling hit, the company is committed to the formulation. I’m shocked.

    But the sadder story is that most people won’t notice and won’t care. IMHO most people just don’t take the time to actually TASTE their food. Present company excepted, of course.

    • culinarychick April 18, 2009 at 4:05 am #

      Thanks Daniel!
      I have to tell you, I look at chocolate differently now. We, the consumer are slowly beng weaned off the purity of some of our food to chemical and non-chemical substitutes, and no one is saying anything. We didn’t used to have all these non-ingredients in our food; but some how, some way, we bought into the construct that old is passe, and new is good. I now look at all food in this manner; I heard it once on an NPR program: If my grandmother couldn’t pronounce it, or recognize it as a necessary element in food, I won’t eat it. Period.

      Thanks for reading!
      The CC

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