Hickory Farms is mostly associated as a catalog retailer of meats and cheeses these days (with the occasional holiday pop-up store), but over the years they’ve had permanent mall locations and offered all sorts of consumable gifts, including a run of delicious-sounding chocolate bars I recently discovered that were first released in the early 1970’s!
The history of Hickory Farms is wonderfully and succinctly summarized over on Hickory Farms current homepage:
This vintage image of a Hickory Farms mall store evokes quite a lot of nostalgia:
One can imagine shopping for gifts for a family member or perhaps gathering supplies for a casual get together with friends. And filling a shopping bag just like this one:
For some added nostalgia and a sense of what Hickory Farms was like and what it meant to people back during this era, here are a pair of vintage television commercials from the early 1980’s.
So it was that Hickory Farms’ very first retail store opened in 1959 and by 1981 there were over one thousand of them across the United States and Canada. In 1970, those outlets were selling their own private label Hickory Farms chocolate bars. Produced by the Albert Heijn company of Zaandam Holland, the chocolate bars came in many flavors.
I was recently thrilled to discover the existence of these and at the same time add a set of them to my collection and historical archives and here they are:
At some point in the ensuing years, the wrapper design would receive a series of tweaks, incorporating the updated Hickory Farms graphic. The difference between the two is highlighted here:
And here are redesigned wrappers for ten different flavors of Hickory Farms chocolate bars:
And finally here are a few smaller, 1-ounce bar wrappers:
And that is everything I’ve got on Hickory Farms early 70’s chocolate bar line. As you can see, they offered a rich assortment of flavors and they stuck around long enough to get at least one wrapper redesign (and maybe more).
It’s great fun to have discovered the existence of these and to be able to document them here and share the memory of them.
See you next time!
Thanks for this post. Going to the mall in the 1970s included an anticipated trip to the Hickory Farms store for free samples of meats and cheeses. I remember them selling a variety of snack crackers, too, but have no memory of their candies.
You never cease to amaze me with what you find. I am always surprised by what I learn here. I never knew Hickory Farms sold chocolate! I remember them having kiosks in the mall when I was a kid, but they only sold sausage sticks and cheese gift sets and similar items.
I remember eating some of these. The milk chocolate with hazelnuts and the milk chocolate with walnuts. Didn’t have two many of them, but oddly enough I remember the wrapper change. The first ones were good and fresh, but later there was freshness issues, they were very stale. The quality dropped, which means less sales, which means even more quality drop. At the same time higher quality imported bars become more available that were cheaper. They also had some Old Fashioned Candy Sticks for a while with Hickory Farms on printed on the stick’s wrapper, either white or black with white-highlights.
Jason, whatever happened to Hickory Farms mall stores? Are they still around anymore?