Friday, August 22, 2014

From the Candy Aisle: Snik Snak

Product: Snik Snak
Company - M&M/Mars
Years - 1973 - Late 70's

Remember Christmas, back in the 80's, when you'd open presents from relatives who you only saw a few times a year? What did they get you? Chances are, like most of us, they bought what they thought boys my age liked: He-Man, GI Joes, Transformers........but there was a catch. They were going to spend as little on your gift as possible. So instead of Transformers, you got the cheap knockoff called "Convertors" (it's a real thing...look it up). Or "Action Force" instead of GI Joe.

And you smiled, and thanked them, as you were taught to do. Then, a week later, they were blown up by firecrackers in a battle with the REAL GI Joe/Transformers/He-Man.

Knock offs. Nobody likes them.

But enough about my disappointing holidays. Lets talk about food knockoffs.  Specifically, Lets talk about the Snik Snak.
M&M Mars - Snik Snak Stiks [Kit Kat] - candy bar wrapper - 1974
Image by Jason Liebig @

Snik Snak was created in 1973 by M&M/Mars to go up against Hershey's wildly successful Kit Kat bar.  And by "created",  I mean directly ripped off from.

Seriously, it's the same thing. A series of waffers covered in chocolate.......even the freaking name is a rip off! I honestly have no idea how Hershey didn't file a lawsuit against them.
I'm equally surprised that it lasted for at least 5 years on the market.
There is nothing original about this.
Oh, sure, it's 6 smaller sticks instead of 4 larger ones. Whoop-de-do.

Snik Snak Ad - 1973

These were a little before my time, so thankfully I didn't have to suffer through the crushing disappointment of getting one of these from a parent for a snack, or worse yet, on Halloween in my basket.

I guess there's a reason Kit Kats are still around today and Snik Snaks aren't.

It's probably the same reason I don't really talk to my uncle Sal anymore, either. I'm sure he had a good reason for getting me the "Treasures of the Temple Warriors" action figures instead of the He-Man toy I wanted back in 86.

Monday, August 4, 2014

From the Endangered Groceries lists - Duck Dynasty Gummy Ducks candy

So, yeah.....I came across this gem in a bin at Walmart.
I picture eating these and constantly pulling beard hairs out of my mouth.
Hurry up, boys, your 5 minutes is just about up! Crab that cash!

sell-out [sel-out] - NOUN

- a person who betrays a cause, organization, or the like; traitor.

- a person who compromises his or her personal values, integrity, talent, or the like, for money or     personal advancement.
- an act of betrayal 

Friday, July 11, 2014

From the Candy Aisle: Space Dust/Cosmic Candy

Product: Space Dust/Cosmic Candy
Company: General Foods
Years - Late 70's-early 80's

Vintage General Foods Cherry Cosmic Candy Box Packs
Image by Greg Koenig

Ground control to major Tom.....

Ground Control to Major Tom.......

Take your protein pills and put your helmet on.....

Here's a fun one. In the late 1976, General Foods really took the novelty candy world by storm with it's new candy, Pop Rocks. It was a hit, so a few years later, they released a new candy (which was similar) called Space Dust. It was basically Pop Rocks, just crushed up into a fine powder.

It was instantly a huge success, but it didn't take long for train to go off the rails.

First, Parents complained that the name "Space Dust",  along with the appearance of the candy, was too similar to illegal drugs such as Angel Dust. Accusations were even made that the candy, because of its similarity to powdered drugs, would lead kids into real drug use.
As a result, the name was changed from Space Dust" to "Cosmic Candy".

That problem seemed to be solved, but more trouble was brewing. A rumor started going around that the candy was unsafe, and that a kid died while consuming the candy while drinking a soda. (I heard it was Mikey from the Life Cereal commercials). These rumors once again got parents in an uproar over the candy (just chill, parents). It got so bad that Bill Mitchell, chemist and creator of Pop Rocks and Cosmic Candy actually took out a full page newspaper ad in the Feb. 6th edition of the Pittsburgh Press in 1979, explaining that the entire thing was not true. He explains how he started making the candy back in the 1950's for his kids, and how it was perfectly save despite all the rumors about it.

The candy remained wildly popular for a few years. Stores struggled to keep it in stock.
But in a year or too, it seemed everyone lost interest in it. Store who had stockpiled the candy suddenly found themselves stuck with boxes of it they couldn't sell (I wonder if this is why unopened cases of it seem to show up for sale from time to time...)

Image from Traci*s Retro via Flickr

I love the packaging for this candy. It is so.....70's drug culture-y in it's style. It makes me want to put on some Bowie, pop in a movie like Nelvana's "Cosmic Christmas" or "The Devil and Daniel Mouse", and just space out. Maybe pop open a few packets of this......and wash it down with a Coke.....and see........what magical places it takes me.......

For here
Am I sitting in a tin can
Far above the world........
Planet Earth is blue
And there's nothing I can do.

So normally I would just end it there, but there is one other interesting, if you can call it that, article I found while looking into this stuff. It comes from the May 22nd, 1978 edition of the Vilage Voice Newspaper. I thought it was a rather strange article to be in a newspaper, but then I noticed the ad directly to it's right, and I was like "'s THAT kind of newspaper....)
It involves Space Dust Candy and, well, a sex act......

This is from an actual newspaper. I am not making this up.

The article in question in on the left, entitled "Lip-Smacker" - the other Ad is to the right....

And then there are the commercials....

Friday, June 6, 2014

From the Snack Aisle - Kellogg's Pokes

Product: Pokes Snack
Company: Kellogg's
Years: 1967 - ????

"How'd you like a poke in the mouth?" I thought to myself upon seeing these packages for the first time, thinking I was being clever and a bit dirty.
But then I did a little bit of research, and I found that Kellogg's did indeed use that tagline.
"A Poke in the mouth makes a hit in the tummy", to be exact. Great (dirty) minds think alike, I guess.

Image/Boxes by Grickily

So this is what I know about Pokes:
1. They came in 4 flavors. Corn, Cheese and Bar-B-Q were the original 3 flavors, and Potato Pokes were added sometime shortly after.

2. These were "Tasty little Snack Baskets", which look like they just took some Chex and opened up one end....a clever snack shape I don't think I've seen before (Bugle's are pretty similar in execution)

3. The boxes are AMAZING. I mean...LOOK at them. The Potato Pokes have an Irish Potato creature on the front! The Corn Pokes have a crazy looking Indian corn creature on it! The Cheese Pokes have a smiling hunk of (alpine?) Cheese on it! The Bar-B-Q Pokes have a ........cowboy looking......what is that.....a hunk of coal? Ok, that one I'm not sure about. But the boxes reek of the late 60's, and I would love to have a set for my collection.

4. The Reason I don't have them in my collection is because they are Rare, and Expensive if you do find them. A Corn Pokes box sold on Hakes Auctions last year for $600. My wife would kick me out of the house if I spend $600 on ANY box (unless there was a diamond ring inside of it, for her).

5. I'm not sure if these were sold in the US and in Canada or only in Canada. The only advertising I could find for them was in the Montreal Gazette, and it says on the Coupon "Kellogg's Company of Canada, 1968". I know there are Kellogg's cereals that you can only get in Canada, so maybe this was along the same lines? I never had there while they were in stores, so maybe someone can confirm for me.

I couldn't find a lot of info on these, like many of the slightly less popular brands of the 60's-70's. But an important addition to the shelves of Gone But Not Forgotten Groceries none the less.

Leave a comment if you remember these awesome yet slightly creepy looking snacks! 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Return of the Greatest Kool-Aid flavors!!!!

Just a quick post today to point out the fact that Kool-Aid has brough back to the store shelves (for a limited time) some of the greatest previously discontinued flavors of all time. A few months ago I had a post about how I found Sharkleberry Fin on the shelf at my local grocery store and since then I was hoping they would bring back more.
Well, I'm here to let everyone know that they must have been reading my mind (or Kool-Aid is working with the NSA), because in stores now you can get Purplesaurus Rex, Rock-A-Dile Red, Great Bluedini, and Pink Swimmingo! So go! Go Now, before they are gone for another 20+ years!

(Thanks to the Impulse Buy for pointing these out! -