NCA’s Downs Praises Candy Technologists For Innovation Through COVID

Washington — NCA President & CEO John Downs praised confectionery industry technologists for being crucial in helping the industry survive and thrive during the pandemic by maintaining industry operations through their on-going focus on innovation, safety and taste, during a remote address to the American Association of Candy Technologists community this morning at its National Seminar.

“The technology workforce drives this industry,” he said. “You design the innovations — in packaging, ingredients and finished product. You control our quality, making sure that the U.S. candy industry is safe. And most importantly, you are in charge of taste. Delicious treats that delight our shoppers are the core of the chocolate and candy industry — and we have you to thank for that! It’s a great time to be a candy maker because chocolate and candy never felt or tasted so good — thanks to you!”

He noted that more people plan to get out and celebrate Halloween this year than in 2021, especially young parents, citing the Association’s research. “Our research shows that many Americans will embrace new Halloween traditions this year, including celebrating Halloween at home with activities like candy scavenger hunts. But consumers tell us that candy is always part of the mix,” he said. “After all, enjoying a few chocolate and candy treats throughout the season is How We Halloween!”

He also highlighted the issues NCA is currently tracking and shared new industry principles around cannabis and EPR, pointing out the Association is closely monitoring cannabis regulation and legislation.

“In fact, we just released a set of principles to help government bodies understand our industry’s position that edibles are to be viewed separately from confectionery, a position the FDA has taken as well. We’re thinking about what sustainability means for our industry and we’ve put together a set of principles around Extended Producer Responsibility.”