Candy Cane Land

Twist, stretch, twirl: A day in the life of a candy cane

Sugar, corn syrup, and water are cooked to 325F in big copper kettles. Color is added later.

Photograph by Benjamin Rasmussen for Bloomberg Businessweek

Hammond’s Candies in Denver annually produces 5 million to 7 million handmade candy canes, most made with sugar, corn syrup, and water, and an all-natural variety made with tapioca syrup. When the company began in 1920, it produced fewer than 1,000 canes a year. The third week of November is the last big shipping week for holiday products, says CEO Andy Schuman. “If they don’t have the product in their hands before Thanksgiving,” he says, “they go crazy.”

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