New York, Oct. 26 (Reuters): Keeping dentists busy since 1928, bubble gum celebrated its 75th anniversary yesterday with enough sugar to keep kids hopping way past Halloween.
Created in 1928 by Walter Deimer, an accountant in Philadelphia, the perennial treat was pegged Dubble Bubble by its maker and sold by Fleer Gum Co., which owned the brand name. The first Dubble Bubble squares went on sale in 1937. Years later the name has stuck though the brand is now owned by Concord Confections Inc. of Toronto. Yet it remains one of the timeless candy treats.
In Dylan’s Candy Bar in Manhattan, the energy was reminiscent of any popular watering hole, replete with laughter, snappy pop tunes and picture-taking. But throw in the national bubble gum blowing champion signing autographs and barrels of candy and games, it became clear adults were to mind their manners. “If you can’t have fun doing this, you can’t have fun,” said Paul Cherrie, senior vice president sales/marketing of Concord. “We operate in kid-mode and it would be a sad day to switch that off. They are the best source of ideas.”
Cherrie said privately-held Concord acquired the Dubble Bubble brand in 1998, selling it in 62 different countries and generating sales of more than $100 million. Its major competitor is Topps Co., which makes Bazooka bubble gum.
Back at the bar the champ, 10-year old Aina Cambridge of Chicago, periodically blew bubbles for her public. She was wearing the crown she won on NBC’s Today show in August with a 14-inch bubble. She also received a $10,000 savings bond, a donation to the children’s miracle network in her name — and yes of course, loads of Dubble Bubble gum.