MUNDANE MYSTERIES: Why Stores Sell Halloween Candy So Early

The first sign of fall isn’t always colorful leaves or a nip in the air. No, the first sign of fall nowadays is seeing fun-sized candies in black-and-orange wrappers going on sale in stores, up to a month before their holiday’s actual start date. Why do stores start selling Halloween candy so far ahead of Halloween?

You might assume that seeing Halloween treats around Labor Day would turn customers off, but retailers & candy makers insist that isn’t the case. Through clever manipulation, businesses have been able to stretch the candy-buying season (and their profits) as a result. The start of autumn isn’t decided by the calendar or the public, at least not economically. Retailers actually control when shoppers start to get in the Halloween spirit. Because when we shoppers see candy corn & mini chocolate bars at our local stores, that primes us to prepare for the upcoming holiday…even if it’s 90° outside & we’re still shopping for pool party supplies. You might get annoyed momentarily by the premature holiday display, but through the power of suggestion, we’re all more open to picking up some treats on that visit or our next.

So why do companies want people to adopt a fall mindset in mid-August? Not at all surprisingly, the answer is…money. The Halloween season is a lucrative time for candy manufacturers & the stores that sell that candy. They already know we’ll buy a bag or two for trick-or-treaters ahead of October 31st. The trick is getting us to make multiple candy purchases ahead of Halloween. So, by stocking seasonal candy before the actual start of autumn, businesses get people craving (and then buying) Halloween treats earlier in the year than we otherwise would. And that enables companies to artificially tack an extra month onto their most profitable season.

Got a Mundane Mystery you’d like solved? Send me a message via Twitter (@AndyWebbRadio), or shoot me an email at [email protected].

BROUGHT TO YOU BY: Berryville Graphics