Jelly Belly Bought Out

I heard that the Jelly Belly Company has been bought out by another major candy manufacturer.
I wonder if there will be any improvements.

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Used to be a member of their club, back in the '90s. Ate way too many a popcorn + grape jelly combo. The jalapeño one was fun, too.

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That’s what I have been looking for!

I’d be more worried about deterioration than I’d expect potential improvement(s) with any buyout.

Just saying what I’ve seen.

Sorry, I guess I’m just jaded…

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I remember when they used to sell a 2 lb bag of belly flops for something like five bucks at the factory.

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I think they still do.

Not for $5 anymore, though.

BITD…like misshapen fortune cookies and other blems. Haven’t seen those things at all for years.

Years ago I took my daughter on the Jelly Belly factory tour. Really interesting, but I’m a fan of food-related factory tours having visited the Heinz plant many times while growing up in Pittsburgh. There was a school group with us, and the guides gave out many samples along the way. By the time we got to the gift shop, all of the kids were bouncing off the walls. I felt sorry for the teachers. The ride back on the school bus must have been hellish!

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Those food tours were so fun!
We went to Svenhard’s and the Skippy Peanut Butter factory in the BA as
grade schoolers and got treats afterwards. Svenhard’s gave us a little ‘Danish’ and Skippy gave us all little jars of peanut butter. We didn’t have Skippy at home (it was another ‘S’ brand, I don’t remember—not homogenized). That little jar was a thrill.
In high school, the only field trip in 6 years of secondary school was to Chinatown in SF (so lucky!l) to visit a noodle factory and a fortune cookie factory. So fun and breathing in the aromas while walking up and down the streets in those days…
Then, in college we had a field trip for one of the Asian Studies sections to visit Japantown in SF tied in with a visit to the Asian Art Museum. The Japanese Tea House in GG park had a special ‘chanoyu’ demonstration for us and we sipped on tea and munched on rice crackers. Even though I had visited the tea house a million times before, this visit was very special. For lunch we visited a Bento kitchen and from that visit my love for Japanese cuisine grew. Japanese curry, sushi and veggie tempura for the first time :heart:
Later as a parent, we lucked out and took a group of kids to the Dreyer’s ice cream factory. They picked us up at the school in their ice cream bus all painted up with cones and scoops on the exterior. It was a great tour and of course they had to serve us a scoop of ice cream afterwards.
Before we moved out of CA one of the ‘moving/bucket’ list items for the kids was to visit the Jelly Belly Factory. We would drive past it a zillion times on our way to the Sierras over the years, so we finally stopped and did the tour. Not as I expected, but fun enough for the kids. I’m glad they didn’t have the’vomit’ flavor then.
A few years ago I wanted to visit the Gedney Foods in MN where my absolute all time favorite dills were made after Del Monte sold out. No tours. :disappointed_relieved:

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The last time we were there (and probably will be the last time), I didn’t see the bags of flops. And $5 wouldn’t have bought very much, either! That was probably 12-15 years ago.

I live near the Annabelle Candy Company, maker of Abba-Zabba, Big Hunk, et al. I wish they offered tours.

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I’d be surprised if any tours are out there with all the waiver signing, liability and safety issues. When we went to the Teddy Bear Factory in SF 25 years ago it was quite a hassle.

I took a Celestial Seasonings tea factory tour in 2016, in Colorado.

I took the Jameson Irish Whiskey tour in Ireland in 2013.

Here are some factory tours in PA. https://www.visitpa.com/article/factory-tours-pennsylvania

This is neat https://loopchicago.com/in-the-loop/sweet-home-chicago-celebrating-chicagos-candy-history/

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I was driving around random Chicago in the early 90s with my sister. No idea where I was but saw the Vienna Hot Dog Factory Store sign and had to pull in.

There wasn’t a tour but you look in windows and behind a fenced off area of how the hot dogs were made. A very 70s industrial Formica vibe but it was clean and industrial.

Despite seeing the tube steak shooting from the tube, ended up buying about 20 lbs of reject hot dogs and gave some out at home as travel gifts. They were vacuum packed. Best cheap travel gifts ever according to some recipients. My dad stopped by on another trip.

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I don’t recall any issues with liability/waivers at the Basic Brown Bear Factory in SF when the kids’ school had a field trip there ca. 2001. I do remember wanting to tour the business right next door: Anchor Brewing Company! The teacher - not usually a buzzkill, but on that day she was - said she didn’t think taking 30 third graders on a brewery tour was a great idea.

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As a child in the LAUSD (Los Angeles Unified School District) and the GUSD (Glendale Unified School District) we would sometimes be taken in field trips to Lawry’s California Center (in the LA neighborhood of Cypress Park, just over the hill from Chinatown) where the many seasoning mixes and spices sold by Lawry’s were packaged. The smell was rather overwhelming, but it was fun to see the process. IIRC, we were given little jars of Lawry’s famous seasoning salt to take home as souvenirs.

As an aside to this story, Lawry’s California Center had a few restaurants on site as well as beautiful gardens. When I went there, Lawry’s was owned by the Van Kamp family (among others). In 1979, it was sold to Lipton who in 1991~1992 decided to close the entire facility and move the seasoning/spice production elsewhere.

Lawry’s California Center

The property is now the Los Angeles River Center and Gardens.

Los Angeles River Center and Gardens

I think I’ve been there since the change, but I don’t remember exactly.

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I remember Van de Kamp restaurants in SoCal as a kid. They had the giant windmill and circular design. Still see Van de Kamp frozen fish in the grocery store.

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Yeah, I should have written “Van de Kamp”…thanks for the reminder.
In addition to their restaurants and frozen fish, some supermarkets (Vons and Ralphs are the ones I remember best) sold their baked goods and a little blue windmill like these would hang from the supermarket’s main sign showing that specific store carried their products.

image

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It seems that Kroger, the current owner of Ralphs stopped using the Van de Kamp name on their house brand baked goods in 2019. That saddens me…

Ralphs ditches Van de Kamp name