When they’re not (very convincingly) simulating the taste of rotting flesh, Skittles are a candy I hold close to my heart. They’re a top-five movie theater candy experience, best paired with a Dr. Pepper and a cheesy summer comedy. The flavors in the classic bag have changed somewhat over the years, but no matter whether you’re on Team Lime or Team Green Apple, we can all agree that Skittles occupy their own niche in the candy market. Can you name any other candy with that sort of dense, grainy, chewy center?
But Skittles, it seems, wants to create an entirely new textural experience for us to enjoy: Skittles Gummies, the brand’s first ever foray into gummy candy, hitting store shelves in the spring of 2021. According to a press release emailed to The Takeout, “Skittles Gummies will be available in the Original Five Fruity Flavors of Strawberry, Green Apple, Lemon, Orange and Grape as well as Skittles Wild Berry flavors of Berry Punch, Strawberry, Melon Berry, Wild Cherry and Raspberry. The same flavors fans know and love in an all new gummy form!”
This product innovation has me thinking back to the introduction of Life Savers Gummies in 1992. The company had been steadily producing its five-flavor roll since 1935, and then burst into the ’90s with a wave of innovation that also included Creme Savers. I remember being so excited to try the Gummies, but I found their insistent springiness somehow lacking. My best guess: Life Savers are a hard candy that classically conditions us to brace for an abrasive surface, thanks to the bumpy lettering of its logo stamped right on each ring. In the Gummies version, the spirit of that old-fashioned charm had been polished off. Similarly, a defining feature of Skittles is the way that the outer candy shell crushes down into the soft center as you chew, leaving a signature graininess that sticks in your teeth, sure, but provides the unmistakable reminder that you’re eating Skittles and nothing else. Will this new iteration provide a similarly singular experience? Time will tell, reader. Time will tell.