Consumers buying trusted treats over cheaper sweets

A new survey out of Dalhousie University says consumers are buying the Halloween candy they’d prefer to eat, rather than the cheaper option.

The survey found, when purchasing Halloween candy this October, 62 per cent purchased based on what they would eat themselves, while nearly 53 per cent accounted for the cheaper candy option. Almost 30 per cent said their candy selection hinged on whether the treats were allergy or nut-free.

“Price doesn’t seem to be a big factor,” says Dr. Sylvain Charlebois, director at the Agri-Food Analytics Lab at Dalhousie University.

“The number one choice for people is chocolate in general, followed by chips, and then you have others like lollipops, Rockets,” he said.

“People, when they buy candy, they think about inventory management, or perhaps potential leftovers.”

The survey of 5,530 Canadians turned up the results despite inflation and the rising cost of goods.

It estimates the cost of Halloween candy is up 13 per cent compared to last year. The survey goes on to say Canadians will spend an average of $22.40 on candy this Halloween, totalling $486-million nationwide.

At Sweet Tooth’s candy shop in Renfrew, owner Tammy Welten says there is an obvious reason behind the candy buying habits.

“A lot of people buy what they love because they know that they’re going to nibble on it themselves,” Welten tells CTV News.

“But with the cost of things this year and inflation people are trying to save here and there, where ever they can.”

Survey results suggest 53 per cent of Canadians participate in giving out Halloween candy.

Charlebois says candy sales are expected to be up this year in anticipation of a return to a pre-pandemic Halloween.

“We are expecting many people to buy more than what they need.”

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