There’s a Candy Cane Shortage, Which Is Fine Because Candy Canes Are Bad

A consolation candy at best, candy canes should only be used for seasonal decor

Moody Top-Down Shot of a Red and White Candy Cane that has Been Shattered into Multiple Pieces. Due to Covid and supply chain issues, there is a candy cane shortage this year.
No candy canes this year, sorry
Five Buck Photos / iStock / Getty Images Plus

I have some good news and some bad news. The bad news is a COVID-fueled peppermint shortage has led to a candy cane deficit just in time for Christmas. The good news is that a candy cane shortage doesn’t really matter outside of, like, a particularly bad animated holiday special, because candy canes are not good.

According to the New York Post, some logistical issues that can apparently be traced back to the pandemic (much like everything else currently) has led to what the outlet has dubbed a veritable “candy cane crisis,” with various retailers claiming they’ve had trouble filling their shelves this year. Again, this really doesn’t sound like a huge problem, because candy canes aren’t that good.

I do not mean to pretend that “candy canes are bad, actually” is anything even remotely resembling what we might call a hot take. Unlike holiday candy loyalists (myself included) who will go to bat for other divisive seasonal sweets like candy corn and eggnog, I’ve never met anyone prepared to die on the hill of “Candy canes are sweet seasonal bliss and it just wouldn’t be Christmas if I couldn’t suck on a sticky, inconveniently shaped breath mint that doesn’t actually freshen your breath that much at all.”

Keep in mind, this is coming from someone who loves terrible seasonal candy. Candy corn is literally my favorite candy and jellybeans are a close second (but none of Jellybelly’s “gourmet” bullshit — only those fat, waxy ones you can get around Easter will do for me, thanks). But candy canes are barely even candy. At best, they are a last resort consolation sweet, only to be turned to amid a desperate post-holiday sugarcrash after all the Christmas cookies are gone and you’ve caught yourself seriously considering breaking into the gingerbread house. There’s no joy to be had in sucking on a candy cane, just stickiness and disappointment.

Candy canes are only good for two things: festive holiday decor, and being nibbled into the shape of a shiv by nine-year-old boys named Zack. So aside from the Zacks of the world who would have had their candy canes confiscated by their teachers anyway, I don’t really see who a holiday candy cane shortage is going to harm.

A Champagne shortage, on the other hand …


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