After a year of double-digit sales growth, confectionery sales leading up to Valentine’s Day 2022 are expected to top $3.4 billion as consumers look for fun and unique ways to treat themselves and retailers seek new ways to delight their shoppers in the COVID-19 environment.  

And a new survey from the National Confectioners Association, taken in January 2022, revealed that 91 percent of people say they’ll celebrate Valentine’s Day this year. In addition, 93 percent say they’d like to receive a gift of chocolate and candy.

Although normally thought of as a holiday for sharing confectionery, this year’s Valentine’s Day is also expected to benefit from the rising trend of “self-care” as consumers treat themselves with their favorite confectionery items to celebrate the day and support their emotional well-being.

“Valentine’s Day is positioned at the nexus of two powerful trends defining the confectionery category right now,” said NCA President and CEO John Downs. “Consumers are sharing chocolate and candy more frequently, and shoppers are increasingly looking for little moments to treat themselves. This year’s Valentine’s Day will benefit from both of these rising consumer behaviors.”

According to the latest sales data from IRI, combined chocolate, non-chocolate, gum and mint sales in 2021 increased about 10 percent for the 52 weeks ending Dec. 26, 2021, versus a year ago. Chocolate sales led the way, with 58 percent of total sales.

Seasonal sales are typically north of $3 billion during the six weeks in advance of the holiday, with consumers purchasing heart-shaped boxes of chocolate, candy hearts and premium offerings for friends, loved ones and themselves. 

For tips for treating, holiday insights, and fun facts about treating during the Valentine’s Day season, visit