Mighty Malts – A 1970′s Malted Milk Ball Superhero and a Confectionery Classic!

Most of you have probably never heard of Mighty Malt, and might not even be familiar with the candy he briefly reigned as the mascot for: Mighty Malts malted milk balls.   While Mighty Malt himself has long-since faded into retirement, Mighty Malts are still available on candy shelves today.

Never as well-known or as widely distributed as Whoppers malted milk balls, Mighty Malts were originally produced by the Deran company.   A family-owned confectionery business founded decades earlier, in the early 1970′s they were acquired by Borden.  It is from the Borden era that the cello pack below originated, and the one that features the star of today’s post, Mighty Malt.

Deran – Borden – Mighty Malts – malted milk balls candy cello package – mid-to-late 1970′s

A confectionery superhero whose head is made up of a malted milk ball, Mighty Malt is a mascot in the classic style, an anthropomorphized version of the product he’s advertising.  How can you not love that?

This also makes for an awesome piece of vintage candy packaging, and one I’ve only ever come across once.  It’s a super example that originated out of the L.M. Kallok Collection.

If you’re scratching your head and still can’t recall Mighty Malts, it’s likely because  you didn’t grow up on the East Coast.  Like so many candy products of the era, Mighty Malts were regionally distributed, mostly to the East and Northeastern United States.  Though there were likely exceptions, as I believe this package was originally purchased in Southern California.

While Borden held onto the Deran brands for over a decade, it would eventually change hands and end up under the ownership of Necco.   I don’t recall seeing Mighty Malts in Nebraska when I was growing up, but a few years ago here in New York, I found Necco’s Mighty Malts and gave them a try.   A different experience than Whoppers (which I’m still a fan of), but a very tasty one.  I’ll find myself craving them now, every once in a while.

I really like the current packaging for Mighty Malts, though I do feel it could benefit from the inclusion of a certain Malted-Milk-Ball-Headed hero:

Necco – Mighty Malts malted milk balls – 10-ounce carton candy box – 2012

Necco has also produced Mighty Malts branded malted milk eggs, and I know I’ve got a box for them in my files (somewhere), but I couldn’t find it in time for today’s article.  So, I pulled these images from Necco’s own site – I didn’t think they’d mind (thanks, Necco!):

Necco’s Mighty Malts Specked Eggs and Mini-Eggs packaging – 2012

I have to say that the packaging for Mighty Malts eggs are some of my favorites that I’ve seen for Easter holiday releases.  Very well-done!  I have the small boxes, but I’ve not ever come across the larger carton – gotta add that one to my collection!

And that’s everything I’ve got on Mighty Malts today.

Yesterday I dropped a hint about a “whopper of an article”, and I’m not quite done with that piece yet – there’s a lot of material to cover.  I’ll be putting several more hours into it tomorrow, and hope to have that ready to go for Thursday.  Before that, though, there will be a new edition of Wacky Wednesdays tomorrow.  See you there!

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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One Response to Mighty Malts – A 1970′s Malted Milk Ball Superhero and a Confectionery Classic!

  1. Brandon says:

    Incredible! This is the kind of piece I get most excited about.

    1970s + junk food + anthropomorphic mascot = the best of the best

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