In 1906, he concocted a bubble gum he called Blibber-Blubber, but it proved to be too sticky. Sales broke $1.5 million in the first year. FACT CHECK: We strive for accuracy and fairness. In the early 1900s, a man named Frank Fleer tried to come up with the perfect bubble gum recipe for his candy company. The Fleer Chewing Gum Company began making bubble gum using Diemer's recipe. You can now buy bubble gum in the original sugary pink form, as a small piece wrapped in paper, or as gumballs. This remained the dominant brand of bubble gum until after WWII, when Bazooka bubble gum entered the market.[5]. A natural bubblegum flavoring can be produced by combining banana, pineapple, cinnamon, cloves, and wintergreen. Frank Fleer, whose company had made chewing gum since around 1885, wanted something different from his rivals and spent years working on a product that could be blown into bubbles. Diemer's Bubble gum was the first ever commercially sold bubble gum. And it now comes in a variety of flavors. This gum was different from all the other gums. But it wasn't until 1928 that Walter Diemer happened upon just the right gum recipe to make the very first bubble gum, a special type of chewing gum that allows the chewer to blow big pink bubbles. Gumballs come in original flavor plus blue raspberry, cotton candy, cinnamon apple, green apple, cinnamon, fancy fruit, and watermelon. Flavours and Types of Bubble Gum. [2] Plus you can get gumballs that look like baseballs or smiley faces. The Market Theater Gum Wall is a brick wall covered in used chewing gum located in an alleyway in Post Alley under Pike Place Market in Downtown Seattle. The Aztecs also used chicle and even had rules about its social acceptability. Adams eventually realized that rather than trying to create a rubber alternative, he could use chicle to produce a better type of chewing gum. All Rights Reserved. [7], In 1996, Susan Montgomery Williams of Fresno, California set the Guinness World Record for largest bubblegum bubble ever blown, which was 26 inches (66 cm) in diameter. [3] Vanilla, cherry, lemon, and orange oil have also been suggested as ingredients. Adams began experimenting with chicle but when his work failed to yield the desired results, Santa Anna abandoned the project. In the 20th century, chewing gum made William Wrigley Jr. one of the wealthiest men in America. The gum was named and marketed as "Dubble Bubble" gum. Realizing they had a new, popular type of gum, the owners of Fleer marketed Diemer's new gum as "Dubble Bubble.". [2], In modern chewing gum, if natural rubber such as chicle is used, it must pass several purity and cleanliness tests. In North America, the Indians chewed spruce tree resin, a practice that continued with the European settlers who followed. In the late 1840s, John Curtis developed the first commercial spruce tree gum by boiling resin then cutting it into strips that were coated in cornstarch to prevent them from sticking together. Until the 1970s, bubble gum still tended to stick to one's face. The first brands in the US to use these new synthetic gum bases were Hubba Bubba and Bubble Yum. And finally, despite what you might’ve been told, if you swallow a piece of gum it’s highly unlikely to end up stuck in your stomach for seven years. By the early 1850s, Curtis had constructed the world’s first chewing gum factory, in Portland, Maine. In 1928, Walter Diemer, an accountant for the Fleer Chewing Gum Company in Philadelphia, was experimenting with new gum recipes. ThoughtCo uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. Fleer introduced bubble gum in a new form in 1951- the gumball. Competition also played a role in the development of bubble gum. Bubble gum may be a 20 th century invention, but chewing gum has existed for thousands of years. Bubble gum is a type of chewing gum, designed to be inflated out of the mouth as a bubble. [1] Esters used in synthetic bubblegum flavoring may include methyl salicylate, ethyl butyrate, benzyl acetate, amyl acetate or cinnamic aldehyde. Chewing gum has a history that spans as far back as the ancient Greeks, who chewed the resin from mastic trees. You might guess it’s a custom dreamed up by a modern-day, real-life Willy Wonka, but people have been chewing gum, in various forms, since ancient times. The exact details of how the two men connected are unclear, although they would’ve been in contact following Santa Anna’s arrival in the United States sometime after the mid-1850s (before that, he led Mexican forces at the Battle of the Alamo in 1836 and served multiple terms as Mexico’s president). HISTORY reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it is complete and accurate. The Bubble Gum has gone through a lot over its long history. This gum became highly successful and was eventually named by the president of Fleer as Dubble Bubble because of its stretchy texture. [6], In taste tests, children tend to prefer strawberry and blue raspberry flavors, rejecting more complex flavors as they say these make them want to swallow the gum rather than continue chewing. Curtis and others who’d jumped into the gum business after him subsequently switched to ingredients such as paraffin wax. At that time, synthetic gum was introduced, which would almost never stick as a bubble popped. In 1928, a Fleer employee named Walter Diemer finally devised a successful formula for the first commercial bubble gum, dubbed Dubble Bubble. Because the chewing gum field had grown crowded with competitors, Wrigley decided he’d make his products stand out by spending heavily on advertising and direct-marketing. You might guess it’s a custom dreamed up by a modern-day, real-life Willy Wonka, but people have been chewing gum, in various forms, since ancient times. Diemer might have invented bubble gum, but he wasn't the first person who wanted to make gum bubbles. Wrigley started out as a soap salesman in his native Philadelphia. There were earlier attempts at making bubble gum in the late 1800s and early 1900s, but these bubble gums did not sell well because they were considered too wet and usually broke before a good bubble was formed. "What was chewing gum originally made from? In 1915, the Wrigley Company kicked off a campaign in which it sent free samples of its gum to millions of Americans listed in phone books. When the baking powder proved a bigger hit than the soap, Wrigley sold that instead, and added in free packs of chewing gum as a promotion. Bubblegum Alley is a tourist attraction in downtown San Luis Obispo, California, known for its accumulation of used bubble gum on the walls of an alley. His first bubble gum however … He formed a company that by the late-1880s was making gum sold across the country, according to Mathews. "TLC Cooking "What is chewing gum made of? To test his new recipe, Diemer took 100 samples of the new gum to a nearby store, selling it for a penny apiece. In 1893, he launched two new gum brands, Juicy Fruit and Wrigley’s Spearmint. In 1950, Dub and Bub were dropped for Pud and his pals. One recipe, based on a formula for a chewing gum called "Blibber Blubber", was found to be less sticky than regular chewing gum, and stretched more easily. At the time, 23-year-old Diemer was an accountant for Fleer Chewing Gum Company, and he experimented with new gum recipes in his spare time. Only kids and single women were allowed to chew it in public, notes Mathews. After moving to Chicago in 1891, he began offering store owners incentives to stock his products, such as free cans of baking powder with every order. Diemer used a pink dye for his new gum because pink was the only color available at the Fleer Chewing Gum Company. Chad Fell though holds the record for "Largest Hands-free Bubblegum Bubble" at 20 inches (51 cm), achieved on 24 April 2004.[8]. The first commercial chewing gum was sold by John Curtis in 1848. Over time, more complex flavours came into being, and today there is a multitude of flavourings that fill the market. Diemer gets the credit for inventing the first successful type of bubble gum. Chicle, imported to the United States from Mexico and Central America, served as the main ingredient in chewing gum until most manufacturers replaced it with synthetic ingredients by the mid-1900s. The novelty of this form increased sales all around the world. While there is a well-known "bubblegum flavor" – which artificial flavorings called esters are mixed to obtain – it varies from one company to another. Chewing gum has a history that spans as far back as the ancient Greeks, who chewed the resin from mastic trees.But it wasn't until 1928 that Walter Diemer happened upon just the right gum recipe to make the very first bubble gum, a special type of chewing gum that allows the chewer to blow big pink bubbles. Bubble gum got its distinctive pink color because the original recipe Diemer worked on produced a dingy gray colored gum, so he added red dye (diluted to pink) as that was the only dye he had on hand at the time. As it turned out, though, spruce resin was less-than-ideal for producing gum because it didn’t taste great and became brittle when chewed. The ancient Maya chewed a substance called chicle, derived from the sapodilla tree, as a way to quench thirst or fight hunger, according to “Chicle: The Chewing Gum of the Americas” by Jennifer P. Mathews. One recipe, based on a formula for a chewing gum called "Blibber Blubber", was found to be less sticky than regular chewing gum, and stretched more easily. It sold out in a single day. © 2020 A&E Television Networks, LLC. He experimented with a lot of gum recipes to find it. These materials allow for longer lasting flavor, a better texture, and a reduction in tackiness.[4]. There’s evidence that some northern Europeans were chewing birch bark tar 9,000 years ago, possibly for enjoyment as well as such medicinal purposes as relieving toothaches. Diemer thought it was an accident when he hit upon a formula that was less sticky and more flexible than other types of chewing gum, characteristics that allowed a chewer to make bubbles (even if this discovery took him a year of failed attempts.) Twice a week we compile our most fascinating features and deliver them straight to you. The Strange Recipe Behind 'Bubble Gum Flavor', https://candyflavor.com/How_To_Make_Bubble_Gum_Flavor.html. The classic flavours of bubblegum were strawberry and blue raspberry. However, most modern types of chewing gum use synthetic gum based materials. Another promotion entailed sending sticks of gum to U.S. children on their second birthday. Fleer Chewing Gum Company trained people to teach others to blow bubbles using the gum. ", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Bubble_gum&oldid=974406667, Articles lacking reliable references from June 2020, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 22 August 2020, at 20:55. Production of Dubble Bubble was halted during World War II because of a shortage of latex and sugar needed for manufacturing. In 1928, Walter Diemer, an accountant for the Fleer Chewing Gum Company in Philadelphia, was experimenting with new gum recipes. Today, of course, gum is sold in a … The ancient Greeks, Mayans, and North American native peoples chewed different kinds of gum made from tree sap. Then Diemer actually did have an accident: He lost the recipe the day after his discovery and it took him four months to figure it out again. Married women and widows could chew it privately to freshen their breath, while men could chew it in secret to clean their teeth. The next key development came when an inventor in New York, Thomas Adams, got his hands on some chicle through exiled Mexican president Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna.

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