98% of Americans Will Welcome Trick-or-Treaters With Chocolate and Candy

98% of Americans Will Welcome Trick-or-Treaters With Chocolate and Candy

WASHINGTON— Don’t be spooked by the most important question on everyone’s mind at this time of year: trick or treat? The answer is resoundingly in favor of treats, with 93% of Americans saying they’ll share chocolate and candy with friends and family to celebrate the Halloween season this fall. Chocolate and candy play an important role in special occasions, seasonal celebrations and the American economy – and the Halloween season is an integral component of that, driving about $6 billion in confectionery retail sales each year.

“The Halloween season is a cherished tradition that is enhanced by the central role that chocolate and candy play in making it fun, exciting and special for consumers all across the country,” John Downs, National Confectioners Association president & CEO, said. “The excitement around the Halloween season has increased in recent years, resulting in consumers starting their celebrations sooner than in years past – with seasonal chocolate and candy, décor, costumes and supplies hitting store shelves beginning earlier and earlier. Our member companies are collaborating in big ways with our retail partners and sharing in the enthusiasm by ensuring that the classic and innovative treats consumers know and love are available as this major cultural moment of Halloween gets underway.” 

To begin the 2023 Halloween season and get a better understanding of current consumer attitudes and behaviors related to the holiday, NCA conducted a survey uncovering new consumer insights including the fact that 98% of Americans who welcome trick-or-treaters will hand out chocolate and candy.

Other insights from the NCA survey include:

  • 70% of consumers celebrating Halloween say the best way to enjoy treats is with friends and family.
  • 62% of Americans are looking for treats with a creepy or scary theme.
  • 60% of parents say they steal Halloween treats from their kids’ stash.
  • A time-honored tradition of the Halloween season is trading candy with family and friends. Opinions abound on the ultimate deal, but most Americans agree they’d trade away some of their gummy candy in exchange for a chocolate treat.

What are the top three #HalloweenTreats? Coming in first is chocolate, followed by gummy candy. And rounding out the top three is the iconic treat for the season: candy corn. (Find out what people say is the right way to eat candy corn.)

Need some guidance on how to celebrate the season with balance in mind? NCA has a dedicated resource hub with tricks for treating throughout the Halloween season, fun facts to enhance your celebrations, and much more at AlwaysATreat.com/Halloween.

To join the conversation on social media, use #HalloweenTreats, and follow NCA on Facebook, X and Instagram.

Survey Methodology: NCA’s Seasonal Survey was conducted in July 2023 by 210 Analytics, LLC using a self-administered, online questionnaire. The sample of 1,500 individuals mirrors the U.S. population in terms of key demographics, including age, income, ethnicity and region, with an oversample of 500 parents.


About the National Confectioners Association (NCA):
The National Confectioners Association is the leading trade organization for the $48 billion U.S. confectionery industry. NCA advocates for an environment that enables candy makers to thrive and works to ensure that chocolate, candy, gum and mints are celebrated for their contributions to culture, society, the economy and everyday moments of joy. The industry employs nearly 58,000 workers in more than 1,600 manufacturing facilities across all 50 states and supports an additional 635,000 jobs in related fields. The U.S. confectionery industry has made a commitment to increasing transparency, providing more portion guidance options and educating consumers about the role of confectionery in a happy, balanced lifestyle. Learn more at CandyUSA.com or follow NCA on Facebook, X and Instagram.