The results are in.

Retail buyers attending ECRM’s virtual Everyday and Summer Seasonal Candy Planning session Aug. 30-Sept. 10 have selected winners of the 2021 Buyer's Choice Awards.

Presented in partnership with ECRM, retail buyers were asked to vote for the most innovative products in the chocolate, non-chocolate and novelty categories.

Winners will receive a special callout in the post-program coverage, set to appear on in October. Candy Industry would like to extend congratulations to all the winners!

Best Chocolate

Hammond’s Candies & The Old Dominion Peanut Company 

Denver, Colo. / / (888) 226-3999

Key Lime Pie Bar

This 2.25-oz. white chocolate bar features a citrusy, key lime flavor. It’s OU-D Kosher certified.

S.R.P.: N/A

Best Non-Chocolate

Iconic Candy

Great Neck, N.Y. / / (516) 448-5434

Crème Savers Strawberries & Crème

Iconic Candy, in partnership with Mars Wrigley, is bringing the Crème Savers brand back to market. During their initial reintroduction, Crème Savers will be available in the two most popular of the flavors: Strawberries & Crème and Orange & Crème, in the original peg bag and roll formats. Iconic Candy worked alongside Mars Wrigley in reformulating the original flavor profiles and remastering the blends. Crème Savers candies will be available in Big Lots stores starting in mid-September.

S.R.P.: N/A

Best Novelty

Gummi Pop

Portland, Ore. / (503) 539-6121

Gummi Pop Surprise!

Gummi Pop Surprise includes seven toy and gummy candy surprises. Each one features four peel-back surprise compartments, offering more opportunities for unboxing. Available in Unicorn Pets and Dinoz varieties, each one has 12 collectible figurines. New series and collectible themes will keep Gummi Pop Surprise! fresh.

S.R.P.: $2.99-$3.99

Check out these other products we loved!

Belgium’s Chocolate Source

Wellesley, Mass. / / (781) 283-5787


Napoleon Hard Candy

These powder-filled hard candy balls are available in three varieties: Caramel with sweet powder; Pineapple-Coconut with sour powder; and Licorice with salty powder.

S.R.P. (5.3 oz.): $2.49-$2.99

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Dr. Tom’s Cough Drops

These medicated hard candies are vegan, gluten-free and made without artificial colors and flavors. Each piece includes menthol and a Vitamin C for an added immunity boost. They’re available in Eucalyptus, Lemon, Mint, and Pomegranate Cranberry.

S.R.P. (5.3 oz.): $2.49-$2.99

Blue Moose Sweet Shoppe

Centerville, Utah / / (801) 292-1339

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Fudge Bites Gravity Feeder

Filled with individually-wrapped pieces, this gravity feeder is available with chocolate fudge.

S.R.P.: 2 for $1

Gourmet Chocolate Fudge Bites

Featuring 32 individually-wrapped pieces of chocolate fudge, this 16-oz. bag offers more to love.

S.R.P.: $12.99-$14.99

Bourbon Foods USA

Washington, D.C. / / (202) 266-2426

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Fettuccine Gummi

Made with real fruit juice, these “al dente” gummy stips are refreshingly sour. They’re available in Peach and Grape flavors.

S.R.P. (1.76 oz.): $1.69

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Everyburger Cookies

These burger-shaped cookies are filled with a chocolatey center to mimic a burger patty.

S.R.P. (2.32 oz.): $2.49

Chocolatey Tree Stump Cookies

These treats feature a ringed cookie center and chocolatey bark to mimic a tree stump.

S.R.P. (2.32 oz.): $2.49

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"Hello Kitty" Assorted Cookie Tin

Featuring imagery of Kitty White and a teddy bear friend baking, this tin includes cookies with Kitty’s face in different expressions and her signature bow.

S.R.P. (11.5 oz.): $14.99


Louisville, Ky. / / (502) 893-3626

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Pinkfong “Baby Shark” Fanimation Fan

Baby Shark is the latest addition to CandyRific’s growing Fanimation Fans offerings. CandyRific’s technology allows fans to have an animated LED show in their hands. These cool candy novelty fans change due to the light turning on and off as they spin. The Baby Shark Fanimation Fan comes with 0.35 oz. of Jelly Belly organic jelly beans.  

S.R.P.: $5.99

KOOL-AID Character Fan

Featuring the iconic KOOL-AID Man on top, these fans provide a burst of air when the button is pushed, along with 0.35 oz. of KOOL-AID gummies in Tropical Punch, Cherry and Grape flavors.

S.R.P.: $5.99

Chocmod USA, Inc.

Fort Lee, N.J. / / (201) 585-8730

Keto Bites_web.jpgTruffettes de France Keto Bites

These keto-friendly cocoa bites have 25 grams of fat, 0 grams of net carbs and no added sugar. They’re non-GMO and free of gluten and palm oil. Packaged in boxes of four pouches, they’re available in varieties with cocoa nibs and coconut flakes.

S.R.P. (6.35 oz.): $6.99-$7.99


Snacking chocolate_web.jpgTruffettes de France Snacking Chocolate

Crack the white chocolate shell to reach the delicate truffle heart and conclude with crispy quinoa bits and real fruit pieces. Each 5-oz. bag is resealable, perfect for on-the-go consumption. These gluten-free snacks are made without palm oil, preservatives and artificial colors and flavors. They’re available in Raspberry, Mango, and Fig varieties.

S.R.P.: $5.99

Delica North America

Buffalo, N.Y. / / (716) 634-0880


Niagara Chocolates

This line of hand-crafted chocolates is made with non-GMO certified ingredients and Rainforest Alliance-certified chocolate. The range features five bars and six standup pouches with poppable bites:

  • Milk Chocolate Almond Toffee Bar

  • Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Bar

  • Salted Almond 70% Bar

  • Dark Chocolate 70% Bar

  • Milk Chocolate Bar

  • Chocolate Lovers Cups

  • Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

  • Milk Chocolate Roasted Peanut Clusters

  • Dark Chocolate Salted Almond Clusters

  • Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Cups

  • Milk Chocolate Toasted Coconut Clusters

S.R.P.: N/A

Game On Foods

Gaithersburg, Md. / / (301) 329-2703

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NCAA Gummies

Available in regular and sour options, these gummies come in college-themed shapes including graduation caps, basketballs, footballs, diplomas and “We’re #1” fingers. They’re available for a variety of universities, including the University of Alabama, Ohio State University, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Clemson, and University of Texas.

S.R.P.: N/A

NCAA Chocolate Bars

Featuring six individual bars, together they form a specialized image representing a university. It’s available for a variety of major universities.

S.R.P. N/A

JOJO’s Chocolate

Sandy, Utah / / 480-516-7066


JOJO’s Dark Chocolate Bites

These dark chocolate bites have between 0 and 2.5 grams of sugar per piece. They’re free of soy, gluten and GMO ingredients. They’re also paleo, keto and vegan friendly. They’re available in six varieties:

  • Original: 70% Dark Chocolate, Pistachios, Almonds and Cranberries
  • Raspberry Dream: Dark Chocolate, Pistachios, Almonds and Raspberries
  • Peanut Butter Delight: 70% Dark Chocolate, Peanuts and Sea Salt
  • Goes Hawaiian: Dark Chocolate, Coconut, Sea Salt and Macadamia Nuts
  • Granola Butter Bliss: 70% Dark Chocolate, Oathaus Granola Butter and Granola
  • Pumpkin Spice: 70% Dark Chocolate, Oathaus Pumpkin Spice Granola Butter and Granola

S.R.P. (3.9 oz.): $5.99

Kenny’s Candy Co.

Perham, Minn. / / (218) 346-2340

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Wiley Wallaby Low Sugar Gluten Free

Available in a Very Berry flavor, this licorice contains only one gram of sugar per serving. It contains no sugar alcohols, high fructose corn syrup, or artificial colors or flavors.

S.R.P. (5.5 oz.): $3.99

Wiley Wallaby Sourrageous Drops Wild Fruits

Each sour licorice center is covered with a candy shell. Available for summer 2022, this mix includes Blue Raspberry, Black Cherry and Lime flavors. 

S.R.P. (8 oz.): $3.99 

Wiley Wallaby Fruitrageous Drops Original Fruits

Each fruity licorice center is covered with a candy shell. Available for summer 2022, this mix includes Strawberry, Watermelon, and Green Apple flavors.

S.R.P. (8 oz.): $3.99 

Kervan USA LLC

Whitehall, Pa. / / (610) 443-2200

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Bebeto Dessert Mix 

These breakfast-inspired gummies offer a sweet way to start the day. The mix includes a donut, a waffle with bananas and syrup, and a muffin.

S.R.P.: $1.29

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Crayola Surprise Egg 

This egg includes gummies, kids’ activity dough and a sticker.

S.R.P.: $3.49

Crayola Mini Tin Bank 

This crayon-shaped tin, which can be used as a bank, comes with an assortment of gummy bears in five flavors: Firefly Red, Screamin’ Green, Outrageous Orange, Unmellow Yellow, and Electric Blue.

S.R.P.: $3.49

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Sunkist Lemonade

Containing 100% of the daily value of Vitamin C, these fat-free gummies contain no nuts or high fructose corn syrup. They come in Strawberry, Peach, Lemon and Raspberry flavors.

S.R.P. (3.5 oz.): $1.49

Sunkist Tropical

Containing 100% of the daily value of Vitamin C, these fat-free gummies contain no nuts or high fructose corn syrup. They come in Pineapple, Passion Fruit and Mango flavors.

S.R.P. (3.5 oz.): $1.49

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Yumy Yumy Fun Egg

This egg features a surprise toy and chocolate cream with crispy puffs.

S.R.P. (0.7 oz.): $1.29

Kimmie Candy

Reno, Nev. / / (775) 284-9200

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Dark Chocolate Covered Pistachios

These California pistachios are covered in dark chocolate and a light green shell to complement their signature color.

S.R.P.: N/A

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Choco Rocks Mixed Boulders

These gigantic chocolatey chunks are covered in mineral-colored candy shells to give the appearance of large rocks.

S.R.P.: NA

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Protein Chocolate

Available in three varieties, these pieces are packed with 10 grams of plant protein. Each piece is covered with a candy shell featuring natural colors. They include:

Salted Crunch: Dark chocolate-covered crunchies

WheyBetter Crisps: Milk chocolate-covered whey crisps

ChocoRocks: Soft dark chocolate bits

S.R.P.: N/A

Morris National, Inc.

Azusa, Calif. / / (626) 385-2000


Jell-O Gummy Os

These O-shaped gummies come in three flavors: Lime, Berry Blue and Strawberry.

S.R.P.: $1.99

Jell-O Sour Cherry Squares

These chewy Sour Cherry candy squares feature a sugar coating.

S.R.P.: $1.99

Jell-O Pudding Cups

The milk chocolate cups feature a smooth and creamy chocolate filling.

S.R.P.: $1.99

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GoBetter Cups

These chocolate cups are keto-friendly and are free of sugar, sugar alcohols and gluten. Sweetened with allulose, they have 1 gram of net carbs per serving. Available varieties include:

  • Dark Chocolate Coconut Flavored Cups
  • Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cups
  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
  • Chocolate Almond Butter Cups

S.R.P. (4.5 oz.): $7.99

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GoBetter Barks

These barks are keto-friendly and are free of sugar, sugar alcohols and gluten. Sweetened with allulose, they have 1 gram of net carbs per serving. Available varieties include Chocolate Bark with Salted Almonds and Chocolate Bark with Salted Peanuts.

S.R.P. (4.5 oz.): $7.99

Taste of Nature, Inc.

Santa Monica, Calif. / / (310) 396-4433

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Cookie Dough Bites Standup Pouches

These egg-free cookie dough bites are now available in a gusseted resealable standup pouch for easy sharing. The standup pouches are available for the classic Milk Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough and Birthday Cake varieties.

S.R.P. (10.5 oz.): $3.99-$4.49

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Swirlz Buttered Popcorn Cotton Candy

Swirlz has combined two favorite snacks into one. Hand spun in the U.S., this Buttered Popcorn-flavored cotton candy is packed in a multilayer moisture barrier foil bag for maximum protection.

S.R.P. (3.1 oz.): $2.49

Tazzy Candy

Scarsdale, NY / / (914) 715-0311

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Tazzy Pops

These better-for-you lollipops are vegan, gluten-free, and made with natural colors and flavors. Sweetened with isomalt, erythritol and stevia leaf extract, they’re made without added sugars. They’re available in Sour Watermelon, Spicy Mango and Acai flavors, as well as in a mixed assortment of Lemon, Mango and Pink Grapefruit flavors.

S.R.P. (7 pops): $5.99


Stamford, Conn. / / (512) 818-7236



An allergy-friendly twist on the classic chocolate candies, ChocoYums are free of dairy, soy, nuts, gluten and artificial colors and flavors. They’re available in 2.5-oz. boxes in Chocolate, Chocolate Crisped Quinoa and Dark Chocolate Mint varieties. Chocolate ChocoYums are also available in a 3.5-oz. 5-ct. pack.

S.R.P.: 2.5 oz., $3.99; 3.5 oz., $4.99

Zolli Candy

Walled Lake, Mich. / / (248) 214-7771

Strawberry Shortcake Zolli_web.jpg“Strawberry Shortcake” Zollipops and Zolli Ball Popz

In celebration of the “Strawberry Shortcake: Berry in the Big City” television series, Zolli Candy has teamed up with “Strawberry Shortcake” to launch special collaborations for its clean-teeth lollipops. Packaging featuring the iconic character is available for Zollipops and Zolli Ball Popz in assorted fruit flavors, as well as a Zollipops Strawberry single-flavor pack.

S.R.P.: $5.99