Couldn’t decide what to talk about today, so I put my hand in the grab-bag and came out with a rather unusual piece from Philadelphia Chewing Gum’s Swell subsidiary – Earth Shaker bubble gum.
My favorite aspect of Earth Shaker is the very thing that makes it a bit tough to cover as a candy collector – its packaging is as unusual as it is commonplace. Earth Shaker gum, you see, was simply a smaller Chiclets-style gum, packaged and sold in a plastic capsule – the exact kind you’d find in a 25-cent vending machine. I have one Earth Shaker sealed example in my collection – this likely dates to the middle 1980’s:
So if you’re looking for fun graphics, Earth Shaker is not going to provide them – at least not the individual containers. The display boxes these were sold from did contain graphics and a colorful logo. I don’t have any of those, but I did dig up a pair of interesting images from the late 1970’s. This image shows us a standard display box from 1977:
And here is a trade clipping that showcases a holiday edition of Earth Shaker, also from 1977:
My research suggests that Earth Shaker was introduced in 1976, and lasted until the late 1980’s. I have not found evidence that it was sold in the 1990’s.
Speaking of candy containers, I hope to see a future post on the variety of sweet tart candy containers from the late ’70’s and early ’80’s that were a staple of my dime story runs. I recall coffins, trash cans and fireplugs, each containing theme-shaped sweet tarts.
I wil cover those eventually. It’s a big topic. Technically they don’t hold Sweettarts. They just hold hard candy. -Jason