licorice allsorts

Liquorice allsorts

Liquorice allsorts (also spelled licorice allsorts) consist of a variety of liquorice candies sold as a mixture. These confections are made of liquorice, sugar, coconut, aniseed jelly, fruit flavourings, and gelatine. They were first produced in Sheffield, England by Geo. Bassett & Co Ltd (now a part of the Cadbury's consortium).

Allsorts are produced by many companies around the world today, and are most popular in Britain, continental Europe, and North America. South African confectionery giant Beacon produces substantial quantities of the product, where it is both sold locally and exported to such countries as Australia and Portugal. The Dutch name for liquorice allsorts is "Engelse drop",and in Finland they are called "Englannin lakritsi/laku" both literally translated "English liquorice".

Bassett's use the story of their creation in their marketing. In 1899 Charlie Thompson, a sales representative, supposedly dropped a tray of samples he was showing a client, mixing up the various sweets. He scrambled to re-arrange them, and the client was intrigued by the new creation. Quickly, the company began to mass-produce the allsorts, and they became very popular.

The Bassett's company mascot is "Bertie Bassett", a figure made up of liquorice allsorts which has become a part of British popular culture. Bertie was created on January 1 1929 after months of internal discussion. One of the sweets in the current allsorts mix is a liquorice figure which is shaped like Bertie. The Doctor Who serial The Happiness Patrol featured a villain called the Kandy Man that resembled Bertie Bassett. Although a BBC internal investigation concluded that the resemblance was coincidental, it promised Bassett's that the Kandy Man would not appear again.

Bassett's have since released two varieties of allsorts which do not feature any liquorice. "Fruit allsorts" feature mixed-fruit flavoured sweets, whilst "Dessert allsorts" have flavours such as apple tart and lemon cheesecake. Both retain the shapes and textures of the original sweet. Red allsorts, with fruit-flavoured liquorice, were briefly released in the late 1990s, but were discontinued.

See also

Dolly Mixtures

External links

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