Licorice Snaps: The New Formula

Thursday, July 18th, 2013 by Jessica Prokop
Is the difference subtle or substantial?

I love licorice snaps.

You could say I acquired a taste for them. Black licorice is my absolute favorite candy, so I’m always up for a new licorice adventure.  The first time I ate Snaps, I thought I hated them. I thought they tasted like paint. But they had a tough toothiness that made them kind of irresistible. By the time I finished my first box, I was hooked. I don’t know what that paint thing was about. I love them.

old-fashioned-original-licorice-snapsA Troubling Tip

At CandyFavorites, a customer recently brought it to our attention that he noticed a difference in his Snaps. While the bag said “same great flavors, softer, chewy center,” the taste he loved was gone. Saying that the change was far from an improvement, he likened it to what happened with the new Coke.

The New “New Coke”?

As a newly minted lover of Snaps, I was alarmed and tasted our latest shipment immediately. I felt like I could savor the old snaps, and these feel somehow less substantial and harder to hold onto. I’m able to go through a pile of them much more quickly than before. Which raises the point that I still enjoy them. I feel safer since the recall. But, as these things usually go, something seems to have been lost. I believe that luck does play a role in success, and striking just the right balance can make magic. That’s what I believe has happened with snaps. They’re still very good. They’re just not quite “The Original Licorice Snaps“.

Have you tried both versions of Snaps?
Tell us what you think in the comments.

Tags: ,

79 Responses to “Licorice Snaps: The New Formula”

  1. Stephanie Stuart says:

    I don’t mind the texture change, but they should be aware that texture is a HUGE part of the desirability of food. If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it!

  2. I love original licorice snaps. I have been eating them for about 45 years.
    Last week I bought then new version and they were actually disgusting!! I had to throw 4 bags away. They do not taste the same and have a new texture–almost mushy.
    After waiting so long to get my fix with the recall debacle, I feel totally betrayed by American Licorice Co. ruining my favorite candy.

  3. WHAT HAPPENED TO MY SNAPS? The latest box I bought (last night) was a huge disappointment to me. The are NOT THE SAME! I feel like I’m just eating an ordinary piece of licorice now. There is nothing unique or scrumptious about the taste. The box says ‘Same classic taste, chewier center” or some such nonsense. Forget it. They’ve messed with the perfect recipe that I’ve enjoyed for many, many, MANY years. I’ve been robbed!!!! I don’t think I’ll ever buy another Snap as long as I live. I’m so bummed.


  4. Laurie says:

    The new Snaps are horrible. Can’t hardly bear the thought that we will never see the original formula again. Does anyone like the new formula??

  5. Debbie says:

    I was extremely disappointed to eat the new snaps. They are totally different and do not even taste close to the original snaps. Snaps have been a part of my life as long as I can remember and if they don’t change it back it will not be part of my future!

  6. jeff says:

    Feels like I’m chewing sponge. Very disappointing. licorice flavor is very weak.

  7. Mary says:

    I am 70 yrs old and have loved Snaps all my life but now I find them totally disgusting. They make me nauseous! They don’t have any licorice flavor at all. They are soft, mushy and taste terrible! I am so disappointed in them and sad that my favorite candy is now ruined. What were they thinking when they came up with this new formula?

  8. Roger Gallerini says:

    I am totally bummed with the new snaps. I used to buy about 4 bulk plastic containers a month and spent about $28 a month. Now, I will spend zero.

  9. DONNA MERKAU says:

    My family all grew up on and LOVED the original snaps. We absolutely HATE the new formula and we all wrote to the company but they just issue a standard “oh well” response so I don’t think they really care. We WILL NEVER BUY SNAPS until they bring back the original version

  10. susan berg says:

    I also used to eat several bags of original snaps a month, been eating them for 25 years but not any more, the new formula is waaaay too horrible.. sorry to see this end of an era..

  11. cin says:

    horrid horrid horrid! the company will not answer correspondence & it seems they have no intention of bringing the old LOVED snaps back. these new ones are the worst ever & i can no longer buy them… i have to buy a knock-off brand, which is now way better (than their replacement at least).

  12. Patti says:

    Baby boomers unhappy with new snap formula. Who ruined our snaps???

  13. Trinaa Schauer says:

    The new licorice snaps are terrible! The taste is nasty and they are soft! Yuck! They are disgusting! Why was the formula changed? The old fashioned licorice snaps are the best!!!!!!!!! I won’t buy the new kind again I threw the bag away thought there was something wrong with them!

  14. Kelly says:

    I buy my snaps in bulk from the grocery store and noticed a change the last few times. I am now sifting them out to try to find the ‘good’ ones. These new ones are terrible! They don’t even taste like black licorice. I miss the ‘good’ ones!! Won’t buy them again.

  15. Jan says:

    Hate new snaps. Snaps have been my favorite since childhood. The new formula is very bad with little licorice flavor. False advertising by company as they are not the original snaps made since 1930s. I am upset that the company refuses to explain or respond to inquiries. They have lost another previously loyl customer.

  16. Bob says:

    The new Snaps are terrible. They may be softer,
    but the flavor is off. I also feel that the licorice center
    has a grainy texture to me.
    I spoke to a girl at a Candy Shoppe, and she said they don’t sell like they used to. Seems that people are very unhappy
    about this change.
    The new ” Original “formula needs to be tossed out
    and bring back the old ” Original ” formula. Til then,
    snaps are no longer on my grocery list.

  17. Stan says:

    Where does a bad idea (like reformulating Snaps) get started, and why would anybody go along with it?

    These things are terrible, and now can just be added to a list of once great candies which have lost all of their personality:

    Snaps (now soft and putrid)

    Bit O’ Honey (no longer has swirls of peanut butter or nuts in it)

    Mary Janes (see Bit O’ Honey comments)

    Jujy Fruits (made softer and with flavor changes – they’re now just like Dots…..which suck)

    NECCOs (horrific flavor and color changes)

    Candy Cigarettes (credit NECCO for ruining these as well. Once a strong pepsin flavored candy is now like eating a piece of chalk)

    These were some of my all time favorites, but, alas, are just memories now.

  18. Ann says:

    For many years I have loved and purchased SNAPS. Several months ago I bought some and I couldn’t believe what they tasted like!! Terrible!!! They didn’t even taste like licorice and they were soft like jellies. I was shocked what they did to these! I will NEVER buy them again and they should Stop calling them SNAPS! They’re not!

  19. Patty says:

    Yuck! I’ve been a lover of Snaps since —well– 50 years! My friends and I lovingly called them “soap candy” due to the indescribable flavor they had–we all LOVE them!! What have you done? They’re mushy, have too much coating, and the coating is just, well, just sweet. Not the taste that we loved. It’s a completely new taste that I don’t like. I’ll have to find a new favorite. Too bad.

  20. Patty says:

    Yuck! I\\\’ve been a lover of Snaps since —well– 50 years! My friends and I lovingly called them \\"soap candy\\" due to the indescribable flavor they had–we all LOVE them!! What have you done? They\\\’re mushy, have too much coating, and the coating is just, well, just sweet. Not the taste that we loved. It\\\’s a completely new taste that I don\\\’t like. I\\\’ll have to find a new favorite. Too bad.

  21. Penny Neef says:

    I join the legions of Snaps fans who were very disappointed in the “new and improved” formulation, but today there is hope. I was at Walgreen’s in Portsmouth, VA and saw a bag that did not say something like soft, new flavor. The bag just said original Snaps. I took a chance and purchased them and am so happy that I did. They seem to have switched back to the original flavor and texture. Anyone else try again?

  22. I recently purchased 5 bags of the”original” snaps at Walgreens up here in Wisconsin and I am very dissapointed! FALSE ADVERTISMENT! The candy is not the same anymore. I know. Ive been enjoying Snaps since the early 70’s! The new formula has too thick of the coating, which does not taste the same as it did when it was made in Alsip,Illinois and throughout those many years! Also the candy is too soft(which is acceptible to me) but again not ” original”

  23. I recently purchased 5 bags of the\"original\" snaps at Walgreens up here in Wisconsin and I am very dissapointed! FALSE ADVERTISMENT! The candy is not the same anymore. I know. Ive been enjoying Snaps since the early 70\’s! The new formula has too thick of the coating, which does not taste the same as it did when it was made in Alsip,Illinois and throughout those many years! Also the candy is too soft(which is acceptible to me) but again not \" original\"

  24. Terry says:

    Whoever can up with the formula and whoever approved the change to snaps should be fired on the spot. I ordered 6 bags and threw 6 bags minus the 3 snaps I ate in the trash.

  25. Helen says:

    I agree with all of you about how they RUINED SNAPS by changing them to drastically. I complained directly to the American Licorice Company who I believe make Snaps.

    But I noticed the change in texture and hence flavor, right after small amts of lead were found to be in the candy. I wonder if whatever was causing the lead to occur, was also what gave Snaps the better, more chewy texture.

    Have you also noticed how all of the pieces are now exactly the same size and shape (shorter, fatter, wider – like me as I age haha)?! Booorrring.

  26. Helen says:

    Why change a good thing?!!! I can’t imagine why a company would change Snaps candy after 75 yrs or whatever, unless it was beyond their control like the lead thing. Bummer I will miss them cz I can’t handle the gross new version.

  27. Arvid says:

    I do not like them Sam I am.. To put “original” on the package is false advertising. Say “New”. Saying “improved” would be back to false advertising again! They do not taste at all the same and are texture is distasteful.

  28. jaye says:

    When the Snaps were recalled, I patiently waited for them to be reinstated. I have been a Snaps fan since I was a child. When I read that they were back, I got a bag at my local drugstore. When I tasted them I thought I had gotten a bad bag, so I ordered a big bulk bag from my candy source. They had the same pathetic taste and consistency. Somebody at the American Licorice Company’s got some explaining to do.
    I plan to write the company and express my displeasure with this short sighted, stupid and disastrous decision to mess up a good product, They have stolen a part of my childhood, and maybe if we act they will rethink their misguided mistake.

  29. jaye says:

    P.S. If you let them sit a few months they taste somewhat better.

  30. Jon says:

    I love the old snap enough to actually reply. I purchased some at Walgreens. They had ‘Same great taste’. Ha what a joke. They destroyed there product. I wrote the company and never obtained a response. I also wrote Walgreens. Since I last tried the ‘New Snaps’ Walgreens at least in my area no longer carries them. It is sad when some young snot at a company destroys the product. Unless they go back to the old Snaps I will never buy them again.

  31. Barry says:

    Disgusting! That is my reaction to the new Snaps formula. They have no business to advertise same great flavor on the packaging as it is grossly different and just plain GROSS! I will not purchase these again (so sad).

  32. Jean says:

    I started eating Snaps back in the 1950s. They were sold in boxes. At the time, I thought how appropriately they were named because when you bit into them they would snap apart in your mouth. In other words the licorice was dryer than what’s in the product today. I bought a bag yesterday and found the licorice very soft and chewy, e.g. stick to your teeth chewy!!!. Sorry, you’ve now lost me as a customer because I dislike the new product so much.

  33. Laurie says:

    I hate the new formula for SNAPs and wish the manufacturer would listen or look at their sales records to see that everyone hates the new formula.

  34. Laurie says:

    How can we get the manufacturer to go back to the original formula for SNAPs!

  35. lawrence welk says:

    Bring the original snaps back.
    I won’t but the new ones.
    who wants to join me in a ..get em back campaign

  36. Tom says:

    I still like Snaps and have eaten them for 70 years. They are softer and they don.t have a real good licorice flavor, but I will continue to buy them.

  37. Karen says:

    Just like all the others, I too miss the good ‘old recipe’ Snaps. I have loved Snaps since a child in the 50s I would buy a box to enjoy, even most of the other kids thought licorice was yucky! Well, I now think that the “new,” but definitely NOT improved, Snaps are yucky! Matter of fact, my grandchildren even liked the old Snaps, but now they prefer red licorice instead.

    PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE bring back the old delicious licorice Snaps I so loved and called my favorite candy for the last 50+ years!

  38. Faithful customer since 1959. Snaps had a unique flavor and texture unmatched by any other candy or licorice. Now, like so many other food items, its a non descript, empty, bland boring waste of money. The “new” version envokes memories of nothing and makes me wish someone in charge would just admit this dismal failure and correct it before we forget Snaps. I don’t fault people for trying something new but this is a giant step back and American Licorice Co. should admit their mistake and go back to the real original formula.

  39. Susan P says:

    This new rendition of Licorice Snaps is awful. I stop to look at the product when I happen to be in a Walgreen’s but I can see it’s the same fat, bloaded, over-soft product and I walk away. Let it sit open for a week and it’s more palatable but the flavor isn’t right. The licorice has too little licorice flavor. The licorice is too thick and too soft.

    When asked what candy would I choose if I had to pick just ONE candy to ever eat again, I said Licorice Snaps without hesitation. Since the formula change, I don’t say Licorice Snaps.

    I also won’t buy the product. For licorice, I’ll buy Panda’s black licorice bars instead. Nice but when I want a Licorice Snap, I want the original goodness.

  40. Paula B. says:

    I am a life-long Snaps fan, and our family bought close to 20 bags every month.

    No more.

    The new snaps are HORRIBLE in almost every way possible…taste, texture and even the new uniform shape/length. I immediately returned every bag of this now vile product to the store.

    Sadly, a recipe change was not even required. Per the American Licorice Company the licorice in Snaps was not a part of the lead recall (different formula) and therefore did not need to be pulled from store shelves or changed in any way.

    So sad.

    I will never buy Snaps again (unless they bring back the “original recipe”).

  41. Janet says:

    As far as I’m concerned, Snaps are back to their original formula. None of the bags I’ve purchased in the last maybe 10 months has said “new improved chewy center” or whatever. They taste just like they used to. I didn’t like the new formula but I found that if I left the bag open for a while they hardened up a bit which helped with the taste.

  42. SUZANNE says:


  43. Mary Ann Evans says:

    Please bring back the original formula of snaps. The world is changinng for the like Soilent Green. Lets not alllow everything to be just chemical.

  44. Origamigal says:

    Is all hope lost?! Will Snaps ever be brought back to the original formula that we dedicated Snaps lovers all came to enjoy. I rather eat the ones with the lead in them than the newly formulated ones. Snaps makers please listen to your dedicated customers (or you will lose us)

  45. Dale says:

    These SUCK! Bring back the real Snaps!

  46. Tommy says:

    Once a month I would go to the Bulk Store in Taylor,MI and get my fill of Snaps. First they told me they were recalled,Then they came back with a new formula, TOTALLY awful! I was told that American Licorice bought-out Snaps and this is what you get now. Well, what a disappointment. This new “Original Flavor” has the taste and texture of a gummy bear that they forgot to add in the flavor. American Licorice please bring back the real “Original Flavor” or sell the Snaps back to it’s “Original Company”. You and Tootsie Roll are ruining so many classic candies!

  47. Jeff says:

    other then Wal-Greens – I am struggling to locate people who will sell this product! I am a bit disappointed that this “New version” seems to not meet the quality of the old origional version of Snaps! Whats up with the change?? Why did it have to be changed?? If it was the lead….PLEASE simply put it back in!!! Take some pride in your product and go back to making it the old way…the RIGHT WAY!!! We are in need of the Snaps – Please hear us out here crying for the good stuff!! Thank you

  48. Colleen says:

    If American Licorice Company won’t make them they way they used to, I wish they would sell the recipe to somebody who stay true to the original Snaps. I miss them so much, but I refuse to buy the disgusting tasting ones they make now. What a shame! I’ve tried knock offs but they don’t quite cut it.

  49. OhSnap says:

    Anyone know if they changed them back? I used to buy them at least once a month, but after 2 bags of new and improved, I haven’t wasted my money. On the bright side, that’s one less source of excess calories.

  50. Christine Lemon says:

    I was really disappointed when I had the new licorice snap for a snack. It was not the same like it was before. I couldn’t detect the delicate balance between thin and dry licorice with powdery slightly sweet sugar coating. On the contrast with the older one, I could taste thicker and wetter wall of less tasty licorice wall with a bit more sugary coating which was not appealing at all to my fondness for strong licorice with less sweet coating. When will we get the original licorice snap back?

    Thank you, Christine

  51. Sue says:

    I’m so bumbed that snaps are not available any more at Walgreens! Due to the fact I have a huge addiction to them. I’ve paid big bucks to feed my habit, thank goodness for Amazon. Please bring them back, the same great old taste!!!!!

  52. Lance says:

    Yet another ruination of another great candy. Most have just faded away, which is bad enough but to fool with a time tested formula is beyond cruel and unusual punishment. Twizzler did the same thing with their chocolate flavored twizzler. Both are now inedible. The pedestrian tastes of the rising generations is being infused into every aspect of today’s society. There is no taste in art, literature, theater, movies, etc. It used to be that if one was undecerning you could say that their taste was all in their mouth. Now, one can not even say that.

  53. janet meyer says:

    I am wondering what happened to Snaps. First the taste was changed, then they disappeared from the shelves. I am disappointed in all the black licorice, but until the change, snaps were they only ones I would buy.

    Will they be coming back at the old taste??

  54. Cathy says:

    I wrote the company that makes Snaps telling them they are advertising “original snaps” and they are anything but. Absolutely horrible, they taste like an overkill of sassafras leaving a terrible aftertaste. Sad because I too have enjoyed these for 30 yrs. now I can’t even find them and I’m hoping the reason is because they are going back to original recipe. I do hope so because I cannot stomach the new formula.

  55. Larry Strom says:

    The old formula was a real treat. The new one is acceptable, but certainly not the same. Why not make them the same way? Not as firm either. What do you gain by changing them.? The original ones had a faint soapy after taste that set it apart and became pleasant as you got used to them. That is gone along with the memory of the original.

  56. Karl says:

    I jut emailed the company, and apparently since the “new” snaps aren’t selling well, they have chosen to discontinue the Snaps candy completely!!!

  57. tom says:

    don’t care for the new formula as much as the old one perferred if the would go back

  58. Bob C says:

    WHY oh WHY can’t a manufacturer leave well enough alone? If these were sold for well over 80+ yrs and remembered fondly just as they were-then leave them alone. As of today ( 8/23/15) I cannot find them anywhere anyway so I suppose this all is a moot point. And I do remember as Larry does above the faint soapy after-taste that set Snaps apart from any other licorice candy. And why was they lead in them to begin with? And I’ll never buy the new version after reading these horror stories.. I grew up in St. Louis where Switzers Licorice was and still reigns as the licorice to have, but boy oh boy I’d love some old-fashioned REAL Snaps. Not all “new and improved” things are what people want.

  59. Donald Baker says:

    I’ve chewed on Snaps since I was a kind back in the late fifties but all the sudden the store that has always sold them say they’ve been discontinued and I can’t find them anywhere. Sturgis, SD

  60. I feel like an era has ended with the,so called new snaps. I will not purchase them again until I know the traditional formula for this formally wonderful product is brought back.

  61. Jill Harker says:

    I wrote the company some time ago and was told that failing sales compelled them to stop making SNAPS. I, too, have loved this candy for years and years, but that seems to be the theme of everybody’s posts. Maybe young kids just don’t like licorice. How sad for us.

  62. the recall started it…I too ate them since the 50s. looks like something in the formula got banned or something. Again the government making sure we stay alive? That’s my guess as I have tried to find the answer to why the new snaps. I save quite a bit now that I cant buy them.
    sad day….

  63. Terri says:

    Where are my SNAPS that I have been eating for 45 years? My most favorite candy in the whole world! I have been searching everywhere. OMG! I need my SNAPS back. I am going through SNAP withdrawal! There maybe some people who do not like licorice SNAPS, but as you can see from here many LOVE them!!! I have not even come across the “new” snaps and by what I have read here I do not want to! Please bring my SNAPS back!!!! Going back a couple years ago they were taken from the shelves for a long time and when they came back I was the happiest person in the world!!! Now I hear they may be gone forever?? No way!!! I think I need to go to SNAP therapy!!

  64. Steve says:

    Perhaps sales would not be failing if they stuck with the original formula. Whoever convinced them to change recipes should be fired, the original recipe needs to go back into production, and the company can return to profitability.

  65. kim miller says:

    I cannot believe they have been failing in sales. Our stores could not keep them stocked fast enough. I love the old and new snaps. I just want them back! PLEASE!!

  66. Madeline Hofer says:

    I miss the original SNAPS so much. I believe those who made the decision to change the original formula, when their customers refused to “like” and buy the new version in sufficient numbers, essentially said “We’ll show you..we’ll take it away from you totally and then you’ll be happy to buy our product however we want to give it to you.” Not me.

  67. AL says:

    Please bring back the original Snaps, you have lost many customers
    They were my one and only candy… if you are not willing to reproduce them, can you give someone else the recipe…..I would actually purchase in from you…. thank you, AL

  68. Jeff Allen says:

    I can’t believe they have stopped making SNAPS!!?? What a shame and a big disappointment! I LOVE Snaps and have done so for years. I recently tried to purchase what i could at our local Wal-Greens who carried them but only to find the last of my sources dried up and no place to buy more! Another piece of history GONE!! It’s too bad that this generation will never know the true flavor & satisfying taste that comes from black licorice……sad! I hope & pray I can buy a large box of it before it is all gone!!! Sorry but that junk they sell – gummy worms and such taste like plastic and rubber….NOT FOR ME!!! I want my Snaps!!!

  69. Shelly adair says:

    Miss them
    Loved them even the new recipe
    Wish they were back

  70. Bob says:

    So I tried the licorice Hollows…..I gotta sugar buzz so bad that my hair grew and teeth just about fell out. It was like putting a sugar cube in my nouth that had a little licorice flavor. Now I’m not the kind that wants to go back to black and white Philco tv, but when you have the time, you can bring back the old formula. These are pretty nasty.

  71. Gil walton says:

    Please bring back licorice snaps I have been told that there is an issue with the food coloring that was being given used just change the brand of food coloring buy it from an American company and bring back my beloved snaps thanks

  72. Frances Perry says:

    I wasn’t aware of what had happened to Snaps. We were planning to take a trip to where we used to buy them in bulk, but now we’ve scrubbed those plans until we are able to buy actual original formula Snaps (minus the lead)

  73. Kim Gates says:

    The candy coating on the outside is way too thick. I won’t buy them unless there is a change.

  74. Sherri says:

    I am gonna be honest, I haven’t bought another bag of snaps. I hate the new puffyness and the flavor. Why did the snap company have to change the old fashioned flavor. Why why why!,,,,,,,,,,
    Please email thank you sherri

  75. Theresa says:

    I don’t live in the states anymore and my sister sent me some Snaps; it was just about my favorite candy when I was a kid, teenager and adult. First off, they looked short and fat and had a barely discernible center. I gave them a go anyway because I was so happy to have them. I threw away most of them. My daughter tried a few and couldn’t understand why I liked them, she thought they were gross. I had to explain these were not the Snaps I grew up with and loved. I loved the brittle bite of them and the strong licorice flavor.

    These are like a licorice gummy candy, which is absolutely disgusting.

    I told my sister thanks, but no thanks.

  76. Carol says:

    New Snaps are better than no Snaps at all. I’m dying–send me some Snaps!!!!!

  77. Barb says:

    I agree the candy coating too thick. Please bring back the original snaps. I am having withdrawal.

  78. Kerry says:

    Please BRING BACK SNAPS!!! I have loved them for 45 years, I’m am so sad they are gone!!!
    Please rethink this crazy idea to stop making them

  79. Pat says:

    I agree with all of the above. I live in Indiana and can’t find any of them,old or new,but the new formula is a poor replacement but better than none at all. Even tried to purchase then in pensilvania . Not having any luck. Is there somewhere near Indianapolis, Indiana that we can purchase some?

Leave a Reply