By Alexandra Hruz
Americans love sweet snacks and drinks! How much? How about nearly $50 billion in retail sales each year!
Recent industry studies estimate that North American consumers spend over $21 billion each year on confectionary, cookies, snack cakes, and other sweet baked goods. A recent Wall Street Journal article noted that sales for soft drinks in the U.S. exceed $26 billion.
While there are dozens of sweet snack and beverage options to choose from, almost all consumers have their favorites. Who in Chattanooga can’t think of a time they enjoyed a Coke® or MoonPie® with family or friends? Or who doesn’t recall growing up with Double Cola and Little Debbie® snack cakes? And let’s face it—everyone has a favorite color of M&M’s®.
What many may not know is that for more than a century, the Chattanooga area has been home to the creators and producers of many of America’s favorite sweet snacks and beverages. Since the late 19th century, local companies have employed area residents who have made life a little sweeter and continue to do so each and every day. The history of these companies lives on.