The company's co-presidents shared how the family-run business has boomed off of its signature sweets for 70-plus years.

By Nashia Baker
February 07, 2020

For anyone who takes pride in having a sweet tooth, there's a good chance you've enjoyed your fair share of Smarties. This classic candy has been around since 1949, and the co-presidents, all granddaughters of the company's founder, are now sharing the company's unique history and secrets to success. According to Today, Sarah Dee, Liz Dee, and Jessica Sawyer explained that the company runs 24 hours each day, five days a week, and machines press, sort, and wrap the beloved candy tablets almost the same way they did when the company was first launched by their grandfather, Edward Dee.

Courtesy of Smarties

The third-generation "Smarties-ers," as Liz describes the trio of granddaughters, has kept the company's legacy alive by keeping the candy production process simple, she said in an interview with NBC News. "We do it through compression. There's no baking, there's no heating, there's no liquid. It's just the ingredients and pressure," she said. "And that's what makes a Smarties candy."

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The five-ingredient candies consist of sugar, citric acid, calcium stearate, a mixture of natural and artificial flavors, and food coloring. Each package of Smarties comes in six colors with flavors including orange cream, pineapple, cherry, strawberry, grape, and orange.

The business today rakes in over $1 billion every year and makes about 15 billion Smarties candy tablets annually. The company's success is thanks to the continued modernization of the business. Long gone are the days where their grandfather would roll the Smarties packages by hand and deliver them himself. "We've modernized a lot if you look at where we started," Sarah said. "We've streamlined a lot and it's really exciting."

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