Bubblegum

Bubblegum

[buhb-uhl-guhm]

Bubblegum (or Bubble Gum) is a type of chewing gum especially designed for blowing bubble. Bubblegum is available in many different colors and flavors. The most common flavor is the distinctive one also known as "bubblegum", which is a combination of wintergreen, peppermint, vanilla and cinnamon. Bubblegum with this flavor is traditionally colored a light shade of pink.

Bubblegum tends to be more viscous than standard chewing gum: this facilitates bubble blowing. Some brands are designed to be non-sticky so they do not stick to one's face. Examples include Big League Chew, Bubble Yum, Bazooka, Dubble Bubble, and Bubblicious. In North America, the United Kingdom and Australia, bubblegum is often dispensed in gumball machines.

History

The first bubblegum was developed by Peter A. Meijer, the founder of the Meijer Company, in 1906. This gum was too sticky and broke too easily, so it was quickly abandoned. Accompanied by his assistant, Keegan C. Marr, Meijer strove to create a stronger, less sticky type of gum, but was forced to give up in 1908 and declare bankruptcy.

Bubblegum was first introduced to the American public in 1911, although it was not commercially successful.

The first commercially viable bubblegum product seems to have been produced by the Shelby Gum Company of Shelby Ohio in 1924 and was sold worldwide under the name "Blow Gum" and later as "Blo Bubble"

The Fleer company later developed an improved bubblegum, which they marketed under the name Dubble Bubble. The invention of Dubble Bubble is commonly attributed to Walter Diemer, an accountant at Fleer. It has been claimed this story was fabricated in the 1960s by the Fleer company so the "inventor" of bubblegum could appear on the popular game show What's My Line?. The true inventor, Fleer president Gilbert Mustin, had died by that time and Fleer did not want to lose the publicity opportunity. The reason bubblegum is traditionally pink is that it was the original color used by Frank H. Fleer, as it was the only one in stock when he made it.

Up to the 1970s, bubblegum had a tendency to stick to one's face, if given the opportunity. But with the advent of super-soft, non-stick gum like Bubble Yum, Bubblicious and Hubba Bubba, bubble blowing became a less dangerous sport. In the years that followed, the fear of gum sticking to one's face actually ceased to be a cultural phenomenon, despite having been a common humorous reference in entertainment.

Indeed, with the introduction of Bubble Yum, bubblegum became one of the best-selling sweets in the US and soon outpaced Life Savers eponymous flagship candy in annual sales.

The 23 inch (58.24 cm) bubble blown by Susan Montgomery Williams of Fresno, California in 1994 stills holds the Guinness World Record as the largest bubble blown (in 1979, she broke the then-existing 17 inch[43.18 cm]record); on 1 October 2008, Williams died of an aneurism at age 47. Joyce Samuels of Louisville, Kentucky is the current Guinness World Record Holder for blowing the largest bubblegum bubble from the nose, 16 in(40.64 cm). At the time this was written, Samuels is the only person to ever hold this record.

See also

References

External links

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