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Why do they call it salt water taffy?

July 05, 2022

Why do they call it salt water taffy?

Salt water taffy is a chewy and soft candy. It originated in Altantic City, New Jersey. Although it has the name salt water taffy, it does not have any salt water in it. Instead, it is generally made from sugar, corn syrup, butter, cornstarch, flavoring, and coloring. 


Also usually known as a boardwalk snack, it is said to have received its name due to a candy shop being flooded with water from the Ocean in 1883. This coated all of the taffy in seawater, and the owner joked he had salt water taffy. Then name seemed to stick and it became known as salt water taffy. We may never know if this is true, but for now this is the legend for how it got its name. 

Taffy is known for being pulled

When taffy is made the final part of making it is to pull it. This means it needs to be stretched and then folded, over and over again. It is pulled and then folded in half, until it is extremely stretchy. This does have a purpose, and that purpose is to add air bubbles in the candy. It makes it chewier, and lighter to eat. In fact, taffy is already pretty difficult to chew, but this makes it a bit easier.


There are other candy that are pulled as well. You may know one, the lollipop. Lollipops are pulled but a machine in order to add air bubbles and attempt to make the candy a bit less hard so that it won’t break your teeth. This makes sense, because if you have ever bit off a piece of a lollipop you would notice it shatters similar to glass, versus breaking your teeth. This makes it lighter overall, similar to taffy. You might break a tooth on your taffy if it was not stretched enough. 

There is no salt water in saltwater taffy

To make it very clear, as mentioned, there is no salt water specifically in saltwater taffy. However, sometimes there is salt, and water included in the ingredients list. This will depend on the flavor. Another thing you may notice is that it is often found by the sea in various vacation spots.


The story about the Atlantic city candy store that was flooded by a storm may not be completely true, but who knows, however, you should know where to buy the best taffy, especially when buying in bulk. Purple Mountain Taffy offers the best Bulk Salt Water Taffy. If you are interested, contact us today.



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