Walgreens’ Delightfully “Nice!” Candy Packaging!

CC_Walgreens Nice TITLE PLATE

Back in August of last year, I received a call from my mother asking if I’d seen or picked up the new Walgreens “Nice!” branded candy.  At the time I hadn’t, but a few months later while back in Nebraska for Christmas I decided it was time to grab as many of these wonderfully-designed packages as I could.  Today I’d like to share them with you.

Before I get to these Walgreens Nice! branded offerings, I’d like to provide a little background on bagged store-brand candies.

Within the candy business the term “Private Label” is used to describe repackaged candy for specific stores or chains.   Many times it involves packages of plain-label candies with no credited manufacturer, but just as often you can find brands like Brach’s, Ferrara Pan and others within these assortments.  Sometimes single private label packages can contain products from multiple manufacturers.

And though it might seem like private label would be an afterthought, for some of the smaller family-owned candy companies in America the private label segment is a significant and important part of their business.   During the same trip back to Nebraska where I picked up today’s Nice! packages, I also picked up a package from a local Hy-Vee grocery store, and it turns out that it was a private label package produced by Palmer, yet it contained Ferrara Pan Atomic Fireballs.  Palmer, best known for their holiday offerings, has a pretty robust private label business.

Hy-Vee - Classic Candies private label store brand - Atomic Fireballs - candy package - 2012

Hy-Vee – Classic Candies private label store brand – Atomic Fireballs – candy package – 2012

Walgreens launched its private label brand Nice! in 2011, and when they brought their new branding to candy, in my opinion their packaging designers hit it out of the park.

Each package graphically invokes its individual confectionery contents, though not always in a direct or literal way.   A package for licorice twists features a 50’s style dance-step graphic of “The Twist” while the package for the classic Smarties features the taped-up eyeglasses of someone who we assume is the “smartest” kid in his class.   Beyond the clever graphics, these share the clean, unifying look of the Nice! brand.

Here are the pieces I’ve picked up for my collection:

Walgreens Nice! - Caramel Creams - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Caramel Creams – candy package – 2012

Walgreens Nice! - Cherry Sours - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Cherry Sours – candy package – 2012

Walgreens Nice! - Cinnamon Discs - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Cinnamon Discs – candy package – 2012

Walgreens Nice! - Gummy Bears - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Gummy Bears – candy package – 2012

Walgreens Nice! - Gummy Worms - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Gummy Worms – candy package – 2012

Walgreens Nice! - Neon Sour Gummy Worms - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Neon Sour Gummy Worms – candy package – 2012

Walgreens Nice! - Jawbusters - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Jawbusters – candy package – 2012

Walgreens Nice! - Peanut Butter Cups - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Peanut Butter Cups – candy package – 2012

Walgreens Nice! - Smarties - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Smarties – candy package – 2012

Walgreens Nice! - Root Beer Barrels - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Root Beer Barrels – candy package – 2012

This next and final package for Strawberry Twists licorice was sadly damaged in my attempt to separate it from its tasty contents.  Licorice can create quite a bond with packaging like this and even with the care I used, it took a destructive act to get the twists out of there.  At some point I’m going to have to try again with this one as I would like to have a more intact example of this neat piece of packaging.

Walgreens Nice! - Strawberry Twists - candy package - 2012

Walgreens Nice! – Strawberry Twists – candy package – 2012

The Walgreens Nice! private label brand covers quite a manner of grocery products at their stores and they all share an appealing design sense, but I think it’s these candy packages that stand out as the best-looking of the bunch.  I look forward to tracking down more of them for my collection as the line continues.

And that’s it for today’s post.  See you next time!

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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7 Responses to Walgreens’ Delightfully “Nice!” Candy Packaging!

  1. Brandon says:

    They certainly stand out on the candy aisle. Good designs.

  2. Melza says:

    I really like the Nice! brand, the bags are cute and the product itself is usually quite tasty! :)

  3. Pingback: Walgreens Nice! Candy Packaging – Now in Box Form! | CollectingCandy.com

  4. Mario Smith says:

    The problem with labeling something “Gluten Free” and then in the description saying the product was manufactured on the same equipment as items containing wheat means it is no longer GLUTEN FREE. That is misrepresentation at the least and deadly to someone with Celiacs.

    • jasonliebig says:

      Mario, I’m not a food packaging warning expert or a food policy expert, but I believe that is why the indication you highlight is there. In the case of the hyper-allergic, or diseased individual. If someone risks death by consuming molecules of gluten, they’re the folks those extra indications are for. But for the vast majority of the population, it is a gluten free product.

      It’s why candy products that do not contain peanuts at all, indicate if they’re made in factories or on machines that could have some residue of peanut oil on them. Even if they contain no peanuts, they could still contain enough residue from transfer to cause an extremely allergic person to react.

      Similarly to your Gluten Free concern. By any reasonable measure, these are gluten free, as the products contain no gluten in their manufacture, but they want you to know that they are prepared in factories where it is, at least possible, that some minor residue of wheat could make it into the mix.

      As with peanut allergies, I would hope those suffering from extreme forms of Celiacs would take to reading packaging less casually than the typical consumer.

  5. Stace says:

    The cinnamon discs smell horrible when you open the bag. Must be the wrappers, because the candy is great

  6. heather says:

    nice packaging and have enjoyed all the varieties we have got lately. package does not say made in USA, is it?

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