Created during the Roaring 20s, Jujubes and Jujyfruits are confectionery cousins, chomped by millions of moviegoers over the decades, thanks to their long lasting flavor, and despite their ability to cement themselves to the teeth like no other. They have rightfully earned their place in the movie candy hall of fame.
As often as people might confuse the two, Jujubes and Jujyfruits (both originally made by Heide Candy Company and now produced by Farley’s and Sathers) are really quite different. Hard and dense, Jujubes are a stunted cylinder, slightly tapered at the top. Though they’re not as rock hard today as they once were, the best way to eat a jujube safely is to treat it like a hard candy, sucking them until they are gone. The flavors are gentle and soothing, some might even call them almost floral. Speaking of which, the original Jujubes flavors, as strange as they may sound today, included lilac, rose, violet and mint. Today, they consist of flavors far less exotic – lemon, grape, cherry, lime and orange.
Jujyfruits, on the other hand, are the softer and gentler of the siblings. Jujyfruits come in an assortment of odd shapes, like pineapple, raspberry, pea pod, asparagus, and grape bunches. As odd as many of the shapes are, the flavors prove just as surprising. There are raspberry, orange, lemon, licorice and mint flavors (thankfully, no asparagus.) Sadly, mint would only make it to the doorstep of 1999, when the flavor was discontinued and replaced with always-popular lime. Though the Jujyfruit starts off softer, quick eating is recommended. Once they’ve sat out for a while, they become notoriously hard and tougher to chew.
If there’s one thing the Jujube and Jujyfruit have in common, it’s their infamy as dental-filling removers. Just about every dentist that practiced during the candy’s heyday cracked a joke or two, all the way to the bank. Those unfortunate enough to pop a filling out with their favorite treat found it less amusing. Once your biting teeth bond to the candy, it takes the jaws of a hyena to pull them apart. Hopefully, once the jaw is released, a sip of soda will proceed to loosen the epoxy-like grip. You could also try a few bites of popcorn or a Twizzler (or whatever snacks you may have stocked up on for the Saturday matinee) to dislodge them.
It may seem like a lot of extra work just to enjoy a simple candy, but such are the sacrifices necessary to indulge in this time-tested favorite – sacrifices that the masses seem perfectly willing to make, year after year. Some things are just worth it.
If your trips to the movie theater included the purchase of one of these confectionery cousins, we welcome your thoughts in our comments section, as we tip our hats to the chewy goodness of Jujyfruits and Jujubes, here at Retroland.