How PEZ Is Made

  • PEZ is an American candy staple. First created as a breath mint more than 90 years ago, today PEZ has an endless amount of flavours and types of dispensers.
  • They have been manufactured in the same factory since the early 1970s in Orange, Connecticut.
  • The factory makes about 12 million individual tablets a day.

Following is a transcript of the video:

Narrator: Recognisable for their brick shape and fun dispensers, PEZ is an American candy staple.

First created as a breath mint more than 90 years ago, today, PEZ has an endless amount of flavours and types of dispensers. But how does a family-owned company that started in 1927 continue to find success in the competitive candy industry today?

Shawn Peterson: It’s nostalgia. It’s relatable. I think everybody’s had one at some point in their life, whether it was purposefully or just given as a gift, but everybody knows what a PEZ dispenser is, and even if you say PEZ dispenser, and they’re like, “what?” You kinda give ’em one of these… “Oh, yeah, I know what you’re talkin’ about,” you know, and how many brands really have that level of recognizability?

Narrator: Orange, Connecticut, has been home to the PEZ factory since 1973, and we were able to get a look inside. So we’re all geared up, we have our lab coat on, our hairnet. Shawn is gonna give me rare access to see how PEZ candies are made here in the factory. So, are you ready, Shawn?

Shawn Peterson: Let’s go.

Narrator: The process begins with granulated table sugar, which is stored outside in the factory’s sugar silo. 600 pounds of sugar are used in one batch of PEZ, totaling around one million rolls of wrapped candy per day. A giant set of rollers crushed that sugar to turn it into a powder to easily shape the brick tablets. To get PEZ’s signature sweet taste, corn syrup and flavourings are carefully weighed and added to the sugar.

Next up, the tablet press, a powerful machine that compresses the mix into the brick-shaped tablets.

It smells so good in here.

The factory makes about 12 million individual tablets a day. Tablets are sorted into bins and placed on the conveyor belt, making their way into the wrapping room.

The candies are then poured out of the bins and tightly pushed down a conveyor in rolls of 12. My favourite part: watching the endless rows of tablets form into a completed PEZ pack.

This is the Vanilla Cupcake flavour that we just saw being made. It’s hot. It’s right off the machine. I’m excited to try this flavour. It’s a new one for PEZ. I’m gonna eat this whole pack.

Of course, one of the best parts of PEZ is the fun dispenser that it’s paired with. It’s amazing to see what part of the process is done by machinery and what part is done by hand.

Shawn Peterson: Right.

Narrator: Yeah.

From there, the PEZ candies are ready to be packaged and shipped to stores. And I couldn’t resist stopping by the PEZ Visitor Center on my way out.

Shawn Peterson: It’s one of those things that’s stood the test of time, and we want people to continue to enjoy that. We still look for what the new, hottest properties are, the trends that are gonna hopefully be around for a while, we try to capture that in a PEZ dispenser. It’s fun. That’s really what we need today.

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