via Public Domain Images
Honey was the first sweet that people consumed, dating back to ancient times. Confectionery can be traced back to the ancient Egyptians, who produced sweets by mixing fruits and nuts with honey around 2000 BC. Sesame seeds were used to make sweets by the Romans, Greeks, and Chinese. Over 3000 years ago, the Aztecs in Mexico used cocoa beans to produce a bitter beverage. After 1500 years, this drink was sweetened with sugar.
Sugar candies were very popular in the Middle Ages. Since sugar was so expensive, only the wealthy could afford it. Rich people ate sweets like preserved, jam, and dried fruit, as well as batter wafers. Doctors have figured out how to disguise the unpleasant flavor of medications. They were blended with sugar and turned into lozenges, gums, and pastilles that acted as throat soothers, stomach warmers, or balanced energy givers from the turn of the twentieth century.
The mixture of sugar and cocoa eventually set the confectionery tale ablaze. Until 500 AD, chocolate was consumed in Central America. In 1502, Cortez, the Spanish conqueror of Mexico, returned to Spain with cocoa and the chocolate treat. The addition of sugar to this drink improved its taste, but it took almost another century for the modern drink to spread across Europe. In London, the first shop selling drinking chocolate opened in 1657. Chocolate ice cream became popular among the wealthy in the late 17th century. Chocolate was only used for drinking until the 19th century. In 1847, Joseph Fray produced the first chocolate bar. In 1875, Henry Nestle and Daniel Peter came up with the idea for milk chocolate.
The history of candy and its production began in the 1800s. Sugar became more affordable, and advances in mechanization made it possible to mass-produce confections, making them accessible to the general public for the first time. There were hundreds of confectionery companies in the United States by the 1850s. Of the first sweets were boiled sweets, marshmallows, and Turkish delight, which was one of the first. In 1847, Joseph Fry introduced the first candy bar in the United Kingdom. Milton S. Hershey created Hershey’s Milk Chocolate in 1900. Many new types of sweets were introduced in the twentieth century, including Toblerone (1908), Milky Way (1923), Snickers (1930), Mars bar (1932), Bounty (1951), Twix (1967), and many more.