Shopping for Halloween candy in NJ is turning into a real scare this year
🎃 Halloween candy is more expensive this year
🎃 High sugar and cocoa prices, as well as weather and inflation are some causes
🎃 One NJ analyst offers tips on how to save money on candy
If you haven’t bought your bags of Halloween candy yet to hand out to trick-or-treaters, listen up. The candy is going to be more expensive this year than last.
Why is candy more expensive?
Higher sugar prices are making Halloween a bit scarier this year, said Carl Gould, business analyst and president of business management firm, 7 Stage Advisors in Butler.
There is an agricultural policy that requires 85% or more of sugar in candy to be from domestic sources, he said. So, sugar in the U.S. costs more than it does in Brazil, the Philippines, or other countries. That means candy will be a little more expensive than they normally would, otherwise.
Extreme weather is being blamed on the lower global sugar supply. According to the most recent Consumer Price Index, the cost of candy is up more than 13 percent since last year, the biggest year-to-year increase to date.
Gould said the candy price hike could actually be anywhere from 10 to 20 percent, which is significant.
With the record flooding and rain in California, not only is the price of sugar high, but so is the price of cocoa. So, as the raw materials that go into making candy are more expensive, the price of a bag of candy also goes up, he said.
Also, supply chain issues, higher shipping costs, a truck driver shortage, and inflation in general, are all taking a bite out of the Halloween candy budget this year, Gould said.
7 tips to save money on Halloween candy
Buy in bulk. Instead of buying individual pieces of candy or bars of candy, buy candy in large bags, Gould suggested.
Buy store-brand candy. “I remember as a kid running around trying to fill up my pillowcase with candy. I didn’t care as much about the name brands. If it was a peanut butter cup, it was a peanut butter cup. It didn’t have to say Reese’s on it,” Gould said.
Shop for candy at discount stores or use coupons, if necessary.
It’s trick-or-treat, not treat-or-treat. With that in mind, Gould said you can buy little toys, stickers, or other trinkets, other than sugared-candy.
Watch how much you buy. Oftentimes, we misjudge, and buy tons of candy, only to have a lot left over after the trick-or-treaters have come and gone. That’s a waste of money, Gould said. So, think about how many kids usually come to your house, buy the appropriate amount, and only give out a couple of pieces of candy, instead of a handful, to each ghost and goblin.
Do not wait until the last minute. That’s not the best way to go, Gould said. While we’re almost through the Halloween season, we are not yet through the holiday season. “Waiting until the last minute isn’t necessarily going to be the best way to go. The stuff has a long shelf life unless it’s very specific Halloween candy like candy corn or the shape of a ghoul or a pumpkin, and you wait until the absolute last minute and there’s a clearance sale,” Gould said.
Find the deals. Gould said the Consumer Price Index has come down a bit and inflation has eased a little. So, there are competing forces of a slight shortage and high demand for raw materials, like sugar and cocoa. But coupled with a little bit of price easing, there are deals out there.Don’t just buy candy at the nearest convenience store. Do some comparison shopping and you’ll most likely find a deal that suits your budget this Halloween.
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