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The History of Sweets

Welcome back to the iPlus feature 'A History of Sweets'. Each week we take a look back in time at the history of some of your favourite sweets.

This week: LOLLIPOPS 🍭

Lollipops are typically defined as a hard candy that is eaten off of a stick.

Lollies date all the way back to ancient civilisations where fruits and nuts would be ‘candied’ in honey as a means to preserve them! They would then put them on sticks to make them easier to eat. Their population dipped in the lead up to the 17th Century as the production of sugar was almost destroyed but things changed once sugar became more plentiful and London street vendors soon found an excellent use for this treasured candy, and "lolly pops" were soon produced in large quantities.

Various forms of lollipops have been popular since the 1930s when American candy maker George Smith patented the name. He named them after a racehorse of the time, Lolly Pop - and trademarked the lollipop name in 1931. Smith's candy business 'The Bradley Smith Company' started out by making the patented sweets by hand but, due to the heavy demand, they had to develop their own patented machine to automate the process. These early lollipops were sold for a penny each!

Modern day lolly companies are able to mass produce lollipops in staggering amounts. This has allowed for them to create so many different shapes, sizes and flavours; making them one of the most popular sweets to have been invented!