Spring has sprung (or, at the very least, is the process of springing) and with it has come along a cornucopia of candy confections in pastel colors just right for the season. While everybody has his or her own idea of Easter candy perfection (cough, Reese’s Eggs, cough cough), one treat reigns supreme as an indestructible brand that dominates this time of the year: Marshmallow Peeps. The oddly spongy and tooth-achingly sweet chick-shaped candy is omnipresent during Easter and if this season is any indication, Peeps is a brand with a seemingly endless shelf-life.
Peeps sort of re-entered the collective consciousness nearly a decade ago as a “so gross it’s kitschy” kind of brand that hipsters loved to wear on t-shirts and foodies loved to declare a guilty pleasure. The Peeps revival today is in full swing with full-on digital engagement, social media marketing and legions of loyal fans. This year, the perennial Peeps as art theme has been a huge promotional idea across the country. For the fourth year in a row, The Washington Post held a Peeps Diorama Contest wherein readers were asked to submit visual creations that showcased Marshmallow Peeps in artistic settings. The winner was a recreation of the Pixar film Up which turned the candy into the movie’s iconic balloons. Likewise, a gallery in Ohio showcased a Peeps Show which opened last weekend and featured — you guessed it — original works made out of the candy.
All of this chirping about Peeps is nothing but good news for Just Born Candy, the candy conglomerate that manufactures Peeps along with other favorites like Mike and Ike and Hot Tamales. To promote its new line of chocolate-covered and chocolate-dipped Peeps, the company has launched a second Facebook coupon that has some 28,000 candy hounds waiting in anticipation. Retailers are in the middle of an Easter candy boom and are expected rake in nearly $14 billion in Easter related sales this season — a staggering $2 billion of that being from candy alone! That’s a lot of marshmallows served to millions of happy peeps.