This Popular Halloween Candy Bar Was Invented Here in Minnesota
It's a classic candy bar, one you might even hand out this Halloween. But did you know it was invented right here in Minnesota?
The Land of 10,000 Lakes has been known for a LOT of different inventions over the years, from Post-It notes to thermostats, snowblowers to snowmobiles, SPAM to Betty Crocker, and more. But did you know that this popular candy bar, which is celebrating its 100th birthday this year, was also invented right here in the North Star State?
Yes, the Milky Way is a true Minnesota original, having been invented here in the Gopher State back in 1923. According to the Minneapolis North Loop Association's Mike Binkley, the Milky Way was first born by Frank C. Mars in a small section of a building at 718 Washington Avenue in Minneapolis.
The Milky Way was actually Frank's company's second candy bar. The Mar-O-Bar was the first. But after a year in business, Frank and his son, Forrest, developed a chocolate bar made with whipped nougat, making it lighter than most other chocolate candies available at the time.
And the Milky Way name, the story says, isn't a reference to the galaxy in outer space but is instead a nod to the malted milkshakes that were a popular thing at the time. In fact, print ads for Milky Way back then called it a 'double malted milk in a candy bar.'
The Milky Way would go on to become an instant hit. In fact, the North Loop Association notes just how successful it really was:
In its first year, the Milky Way reportedly grossed $800,000 in sales—the equivalent of about $11 million today.
In fact, the Milky Way became so popular that Frank ended up moving his entire company from Minnesota to Chicago in 1929. Today MARS, Incorporated still makes those familiar chocolate bars, as well as a TON of other brands, from candies and snacks, to pet food to food and nutritional products that are sold in over 30 countries around the world.
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You can see more about the Milky Way-Minnesota connection below. And keep scrolling to check out some other products you may not have known were invented here as well!
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