The Snickers Peanut Munch Bar – From the 1970’s to today.

[Note: CollectingCandy.com posted a significant update to this article in March of 2013.]

I will admit to coming around to the goodness of the Munch bar a bit later in life.  As a kid, it wasn’t my thing.  If I recall, my brother dug this one, and I would sample one from time-to-time.

Introduced in 1971 by the Snack-Master division of M&M/Mars, the same division that brought us Skittles and the Marathon bar – it’s a bar that has withstood the test of time, and you can still get them today.  If you aren’t familiar with the bar at all, you can read a nice review of it over at Candyblog.net.

I recall well the distinctive bouncing logo that was on the wrappers in the early 1970’s.  I have a full-size as well as a fun-size wrapper from that period.  [Note the inclusion of the Snickers branding during this period]:

M&M Mars – Snickers Peanut Munch candy bar wrapper – 1970’s

M&M Mars – Snickers Peanut Munch Fun Size candy bar wrapper – 1970’s

I really do like the Munch bar packaging – it’s bold and clean, yet still fun to look at.

By 1977, the wrappers saw the addition of a photo of the bar itself, and a loss of the Snickers logo.  They also changed from standard paper wrapping to a plastic material, a change that started earlier for sticky bars like this, but would eventually be industry-wide.

As to the loss of the Snickers logo; I wonder if the Munch branding was strong enough on its own at this point, or if they felt the Snickers logo was confusing consumers as to what kind of bar it was – one lacking chocolate.  That kind of confusion would explain the addition of the photo as well.

M&M-Mars – Munch peanut bar – candy wrapper – 1977

M&M-Mars – Munch peanut bar – Fun Size candy wrapper – 1977

The familiar 1970’s design would see its last use sometime in 1979, as is evidenced by this late 1978 wrapper – which is nearly identical to the 1977 version:

M&M-Mars – Munch peanut bar – candy wrapper – 1978

1979 would see a somewhat dramatic design change for the Munch bar.  Also, the Snack-Master division of M&M/Mars would see it getting its own logo on the backs of the wrappers.

M&M-Mars – Munch peanut bar – candy wrapper – 1979

As with several items I’ve posted this week, and will no doubt post for months to come, the 1979 Munch bar wrapper comes out of the L.M. Kallok Collection.   Once again, that collection has provided a wrapper I’d only previously seen in photos.  It’s a great wrapper to be able to include here.

After 1979 I do not have any additional wrappers to show, until 1996.   That’s quite a gap, I realize, but such is the way with trying to build a history of these things.  I shall be keeping my eyes peeled for a 1980’s Munch bar wrapper.  For now, we shall move on to 1996:

Munch Bar circa 1996 – image courtesy Brad Kent

The 1996 wrapper shows the return of the Snickers name above the logo.  I would speculate that the Munch bar might have been discontinued at a point, and brought back under the strong Snickers name, as it was when it was first launched.  But I am just guessing.

The wrapper evolved again in the 2000’s:

Munch Bar circa 2005 – image courtesy Brad Kent

The 2005 wrapper shows that the Snickers branding had once again been dropped, in favor of a straightforward design.  This wrapper design looks much as it currently does, or did last year, when I picked up the following Munch bar:

M&M-Mars – Munch peanut bar – candy wrapper – 2011

Looking at the 2011 version, you could almost guess that M&M/Mars dropped the Snickers branding, in order to focus on the healthier aspects of a the Munch Bar.  The more I consider it, it seems likely.  I’m sure that a Munch Bar isn’t really much more healthy than a Snickers, but I’ve always FELT like it was.

That’s all for the Munch Bar today.  M&M/Mars has done retro-packaged versions of it bars before, and I’d love to see them pull out the 1970’s wrapper designs to use again, for a short time.  I think they’d jump off the shelf.

That’s everything I’ve got for the Snickers (or not Snickers) Munch Bar.  Before I got, here’s a visual wrap-up – a timeline featuring several of the major design changes the wrappers have gone through:

About Jason Liebig

A New York City based writer, editor and sometimes actor. After spending much of the 1990′s in the comic book business helping tell the stories of Marvel Comics’ X-Men as series editor, he has since split his time between developing his own entertainment properties while still consulting and working on others. Having been described as “the Indiana Jones of lost and forgotten candy”, Jason is one of the country’s premier candy collectors and historians with his discoveries appearing in countless blogs, magazines, newspaper articles, and books. Always happy to share his knowledge and unique perspectives on this colorful part of our popular culture, Jason has consulted with New York’s Museum of Food and Drink and has also been a featured guest on Food Network’s Heavyweights, France’s M6 Capital, and New York’s TheActionRoom.com. My Google Profile+
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3 Responses to The Snickers Peanut Munch Bar – From the 1970’s to today.

  1. Jay M says:

    I am really diggin’ the timeline pic in your articles! Well Done.

  2. Pingback: The Rich History of the Snickers Munch Bar – Revised and Revisited! | CollectingCandy.com

  3. Cisco says:

    Thanks for the article. The thought of a Munch bar makes me salivate like a rabid dawg! It my favorite bar and I buy by the boxes. The Munch bar kicks so much a$$, that colons must be imported from other countries just to meet the demand! Its true! Love the Munch. Sorry if I got carried away.

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