What sort of candy did they have during WW2?

Discussion in 'General' started by Jakob Kjaersgaard, Nov 6, 2011.

  1. Jakob Kjaersgaard

    Jakob Kjaersgaard Senior Member

    Hello folks.

    I am working on a project about teaching kids about what life was like during WW2. I did find some information about different sorts of candy in Denmark when the food rationing was going on. Sugar was very pricy, so various corporations used some sort of dried waffles and sold as candy instead. I am looking for more information about what sort of candy was sold back in those days and perhaps even a few recipes which I hopefully can brew together into something eatable.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

  3. Jakob Kjaersgaard

    Jakob Kjaersgaard Senior Member

  4. von Poop

    von Poop Adaministrator Admin

    '"Sweet shop" WW2' worth a Google.
    Little one from People's war again with a few types listed:
    BBC - WW2 People's War - Doodlebug gets Doris’s Sweet shop in Tooting
    One day I’ll never forget during the war is the day that the local sweet shop was struck by a nearby bomb. It was sometime in 1944 and I was about fourteen at the time. My local sweet shop was called Doris’s and it was in a garage in Wellham Road, in Tooting, London. One day a doodlebug landed nearby and Doris’s was hit. During the war sweets were severely rationed, but on that particularly day there was Dolly bars, Black jacks, Cadburys chocolates, Sherbet dabs scattered everywhere — we certainly didn’t lack for sweets that day. Children were swarming from everywhere to grab what they could from the remains of the sweet shop.
    Liquorice-Liquorice Root Sticks from The Oldest Sweet Shop in England, Nidderdale, Yorkshire Dales
     
  5. Dave55

    Dave55 Atlanta, USA Patron

  6. sebfrench76

    sebfrench76 Senior Member

    In France,germans had the unpleasant habit to eat all the sugar.
    My father ,who was 5 during this period,can just remind of oranges and apples.
    Happily,you brits offered us this delicious Hershey's chocolate,ans at this time,Jerries were far away from us,so the little frogs had great pleasure with this kinda sweets..
     
  7. Scout Sniper

    Scout Sniper Senior Member

    Online Shop

    [​IMG]
    Wartime Cadbury's Milk Tray Assortment Box.

    [​IMG]
    Wartime Cadbury's Ration Chocolate Bar.

    [​IMG]
    Wartime Cadbury's Chocolate Toffee Bar.
     
  8. Orwell1984

    Orwell1984 Senior Member

  9. Jakob Kjaersgaard

    Jakob Kjaersgaard Senior Member

    Thanks a lot folks. Much appreciated.

    I just ordered a few boxes of Nipits and liquorice root sticks. Would be neat if more companies would do a historic selection of sweets. Kids would enjoy it and perhaps make them want to learn more about life during WW2.
     
  10. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    Sweets although rationed were very scarce during the war.I cannot recollect any, apart from "Sherbert" which was dipped into by a dried liquorice root stick and liquorice itself.Liquorice (referred to as spanish in the West Yorkshire Riding of Yorkshire) was available on ration as were other products such as "liquorice allsorts" but the preferred favourite of children tended to be spanish sticks sticks or sticks with one end flattened.

    Rubarb sticks was another favourite for children if one could get your mother to give you a little sugar to sweeten it up.

    During the war,shortages of sugar from the West Indies were supplemented by the working up of the sugar beet sugar process industry and there were about 15 main plants throughout the country developed by the Ministry of Food and the British Sugar Corporation.In the last 30 years or so, as consumer habits have changed,quite a few of these plants have been shutdown.

    The liquorice manufacturing in the UK was centred on Pontefract in the West Riding of Yorkshire.The liquorice plant is a root crop and is grown in open fields as any other crop but the root extends down to about 3 feet and has to be dug out.It is very difficult to remove by pulling it out by hand. Children tended to attempt to pull out the root when illegally entering the fields.To be successful required a pair of strong hands and often the root broke with excessive upward pulling.

    The liquorice extract was removed by boiling the root and then forming slabs of liquorice which would then be processed into liquorice confectionery.The root was then dried and was a great favourite with children who by chewing and sucking would extract any remaining liquorice juice,eventually just leaving fibre.

    Postwar,liquorice extract was imported in large slab form from Turkey which appeared to have larger growing facilities than the UK.

    Sweet rationing continued throughout the war,was relaxed in the late 1940s but then rationed again in the early 1950s,finally coming off ration about 1953.Chewing gum and chocolates were issued in military ration packs.These packs were a feature and were issued for RAF operations during the war and after.I remember, while confectionery was rationed,being sought by our Navigational Leader on the squadron.I thought I was in trouble when I was asked to report to him.But he congratulated me on the setting up of the H2S radar bombing gear that morning as he had direct hits on the bombing range.I remember him well,he was a former Pathfinder and carried distinctive burn marks.Anyway he rewarded me with a large Cadbury chocolate bar for my input.
     
  11. Rav4

    Rav4 Senior Member

    I don't remember much about candy during the war but I know there wasn't much of it. The American soldiers were very popular, and the common request from us kids was “got any gum chum”. The Americans were very generous and I remember a very long column of soldiers passing our school and throwing many oranges to us. Many of us were sick the next day because we were not used to so much fruit. :)
     
  12. ceolredmonger

    ceolredmonger Member

    Can't speak for occupied Denmark I am afraid.

    In Britain confectionery companies anticipated shortages of sugar, fats and flavourings by stopping production of well known brands and concentrating on basic products or existing lines that they could abandon if their reputation suffered by being inferior (Rowntrees of York stopped production of Kit-Kat, instead marketing chocolate under the Caley's of Norwich brand they had taken over. The latter is now independent and still going strong, Kit-Kat was re-introduced with a big re-launch about 1946).

    Milk chocolate was made for military rations and Rowntrees in York produced dark chocolate for emergency rations which went in soldiers packs, lifeboats and emergency bunkers. Hard, boiled sugar, fruit flavoured sweets also went into British rations.

    Children in occupied countries who were bold enough might scrounge chocolate and sweets from whichever service personnel were around. This was perceived as good PR and made soldiers feel better about their lot. Still a factor today.

    Without commercially produced sweets/candy families had to improvise - hedgerow berries, jams/jellies and compots and honey became treats as is or in home made recipies to make them go further. Developing a savoury 'tooth' was also a help.

    Servicemen returning with rare fruit or confectionery were centres of attention - I have been told stories of soldiers and sailors returning from the Sierra Leone campaign (associated with the sinking of the French Fleet) with bags of oranges. They were greatly appreciated in their communities, although some of the kids had no idea what the were looking at.

    Keith
     
  13. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran Patron

    In Italy we were to discover the delights of well made ice-cream.

    Really yummy :)

    In particular when the war ended and I found myself peace keeping in Trieste, we used to patronise the famous Groppi family cafe/bar and to my delight I found it was still running when my wife & I visited there in 2007.

    Ron
     
  14. Combover

    Combover Guest

    Was it as good as you remembered it, Ron?
     
  15. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran Patron

    Combo

    Better !

    Ron
     
  16. sparky34

    sparky34 Senior Member

    HARRY REE'S post regarding root liquorice sticks brought back memories for me .
    on my way to school through the war i use to call in this certain shop nearly every day for a few sticks , i think i enjoyed it more than sweets ..being a BRADFORD lad at that time from a large family .it was probalby all i could afford ..
     
  17. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    As regards any commodity,it did not mean if there was a ration system if force that the commodity was available to the consumer.More than often, the shop would get its delivery in,word would go around that "it was in "and a queue would form.

    Sometimes you were lucky, sometimes not. "Corporal Jones" sketches truely reflect what happened on the home front.

    Talking about dried liquorice sticks.We used to go to the film matinee on Saturday mornings and suck dried liquorice sticks through the session. I suppose now, having no value,these sticks would be burnt as kindling fuel.

    My father smoked Craven A and had 40 a week ordered from the shop where we shopped from.Sometimes it was Churchmans depending on the availability.It was always personal service as this.I would think strangers never got a look in.No such thing as random purchases.

    This was the era where the publican and the local shopkeeper were kings.Our local shop was the depot from where gas masks and the like were handled out.I remember queuing for my younger sisters' Micky Mouse gas masks.Previously I had been shown how to pump air into the child totally enclosed anti gas carry cot.(we called them incubators)
     
  18. Jakob Kjaersgaard

    Jakob Kjaersgaard Senior Member

    Lots of great stories and information, thanks! Seems the liquorice sticks are still popular. Found them at the local supermarket yesterday!
     
  19. Drayton

    Drayton Senior Member

    It seems time for some clarification.

    Candy as a generic name for "sweetmeats" - to use the archaic term - is American, and has never been used here. Sweets (or sweeties, for very young children) is the word.

    Sweets were certainly rationed, but I was never aware of anyone not able to obtain the monthly ration (obtainable via "Personal points", detachable from the main ration book). Possibly some parents claimed scarcity to save money or to curtail family
    consumption. Choice of sweets was certainly limited, and a local sweet shop proprietor would save the best stock for "RCs" - regular customers - only.

    Hershey bars are purely American, and I have never known them to be sold in Britain. Doubtless they were brought over by GIs, but few British children would actually have consumed one.

    The bars that were available were Mars Bars and Milky Way. There were also Maltesers.

    Besides liquorice sticks and liquorice allsorts, there were also Pontefract cakes, liquorice bootlaces, and what I can only describe as liquorice catherine wheels - a long thin strip of liquorice wound round and round with a sugared sweet in the middle.

    Boiled sweets were a staple - large humbugs, troach drops, acid drops, and, not to be forgotten, barley sugar. A stock of barley sugar sticks was kept in school air raid shelters as emergency rations, and, clearly, it was an essential part of air raid drills, as practice for what to do in the case of a real raid, to distribute the stock, necessarily extra to the children's rations!

    Fruit gums, pastilles and jelly babies were also available; likewise toffees, or sometimes a toffee block, to be broken up with a toffee hammer.

    Chocolate was always sold pre-wrapped, but all other sweets were sold by the quarter (quarter lb), and in a paper bag.

    There was not much home sweet-making, mainly because of the scarcity of sugar - severely rationed.
     
  20. Jakob Kjaersgaard

    Jakob Kjaersgaard Senior Member

    It seems time for some clarification.

    Candy as a generic name for "sweetmeats" - to use the archaic term - is American, and has never been used here. Sweets (or sweeties, for very young children) is the word.

    Sweets were certainly rationed, but I was never aware of anyone not able to obtain the monthly ration (obtainable via "Personal points", detachable from the main ration book). Possibly some parents claimed scarcity to save money or to curtail family
    consumption. Choice of sweets was certainly limited, and a local sweet shop proprietor would save the best stock for "RCs" - regular customers - only.

    Hershey bars are purely American, and I have never known them to be sold in Britain. Doubtless they were brought over by GIs, but few British children would actually have consumed one.

    The bars that were available were Mars Bars and Milky Way. There were also Maltesers.

    Besides liquorice sticks and liquorice allsorts, there were also Pontefract cakes, liquorice bootlaces, and what I can only describe as liquorice catherine wheels - a long thin strip of liquorice wound round and round with a sugared sweet in the middle.

    Boiled sweets were a staple - large humbugs, troach drops, acid drops, and, not to be forgotten, barley sugar. A stock of barley sugar sticks was kept in school air raid shelters as emergency rations, and, clearly, it was an essential part of air raid drills, as practice for what to do in the case of a real raid, to distribute the stock, necessarily extra to the children's rations!

    Fruit gums, pastilles and jelly babies were also available; likewise toffees, or sometimes a toffee block, to be broken up with a toffee hammer.

    Chocolate was always sold pre-wrapped, but all other sweets were sold by the quarter (quarter lb), and in a paper bag.

    There was not much home sweet-making, mainly because of the scarcity of sugar - severely rationed.

    Forgive me. I am but a silly dane influenced by too much american television ;) Thanks for the information. I for one would love to try out some good old fashioned 40's sweets!
     

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