Calling the Starburst Candy Helpline

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve loved Starburst candies. When my mom was brave enough to take me along to the grocery store, she’d let me choose a treat if I behaved. At those rare times I’d select a pack of Starburst. As a kid, it felt like I was getting a lot of bang for the buck because each “fruit chew” was individually wrapped. I could eat a few now, stash the rest in my pocket where they’d stay warm until I needed my next sugar high. image

Fast forward a few decades to a time where my mother no longer takes me shopping and I have to secure my own stash of Starburst. These days, the only time I see Starburst are at Halloween and occasionally in the candy bowl at work. So today, while I was opening a “twin pack” of individually wrapped chewy goodness, I noticed these words on the back of the wrapper:

Questions or Comments? Call 1-800-551-0683

Since I wasn’t busy at the time I figured I’d give them a call and see if someone could answer several Starburst related questions I’ve had for years. I dialed the number and made my way through the maze of options including one to learn more about “the Mars policy concerning animal research”. Do they really test new candy on animals? I don’t plan to dig too deep there.

I eventually found myself on hold, waiting for the next available Mars consumer candy representative.  After a few minutes, a polite guy named Cameron came on the line and was more than willing to field a few questions. Here’s how it went down:

Cameron: Thank you for calling the consumer division of Mars candy. How can I help you today?

Me: I’m looking for someone to answer a few Starburst related questions. Are you the guy?

Cameron: Yes, I can help you. What questions do you have?

Me: I love Starburst candies but my favorite flavor is strawberry. Is there a way to determine if a package is loaded with mostly strawberry chews? I’ve tried holding a pack up to the light, but that hasn’t worked well and I always feel a little cheated when a pack is mostly filled with yellow and oranges.

Cameron: There’s really no way to tell. Each pack or bag is filled based on a ratio of flavors. Would you like me to find out what that ratio to flavor is?

Me: Yes, if it’s not too much trouble. (I’m put on hold for about 45 seconds)

Cameron: The current flavor ratio is 25% per flavor. The original packs contain orange, lemon, strawberry and cherry flavors. But some packs or bags may contain more or less than 25% because they are placed in a large vat and mixed together before packaging.

Me: That’s really cool. Do you know if there are any plans to discontinue the yellow ones. They are my least favorite.

Cameron: At this time, I’m not aware of any plans to discontinue the lemon flavored chews.

Me: Is there a way I could buy a bag full of only the strawberry?

Cameron: No, not at this time, but you’re not the first to ask. I will pass that suggestion on to our marketing group who values the input from loyal customers like yourself.

Me: Thank you. How would I go about suggesting a new flavor?

Cameron: You can tell me and I’ll pass it on for you.

Me: Cool. I’d like to suggest a lime flavored Starburst.

Cameron: We do have a lemon-lime in the “Baja pack”, but not lime only. I’ll pass that on to our marketing department.

Me: Do you have a lot of people call up asking about Starburst?

Cameron: I wouldn’t say a lot but we have a few who call us with questions.

Me: You’ve been very kind. Thank you for your help. That’s it for now.

Cameron: Thank you for calling the consumer division of Mars Candy and I hope you continue to enjoy Starburst candies.

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Comments

  1. you have too much time on your hands. but i thoroughly enjoyed the read!! :)

  2. Commenting on a legendary blog post!
    And you can have all of my Strawberry chews. They’re my least favorite, and I usually don’t eat them at all. Lemon is actually my favorite!

  3. joonitree says:

    “Since I wasn’t busy at the time…” No wonder you love your job.

  4. Aubree Henke says:

    haha! let me know if you find a way to get only the strawberry kind! they are the best =]

  5. I agree with Christian, lemon are also my favs. I will send my strawberry ones on to you. I’m not a hater of them, im just more into the sour flavors. loved the phone call and glad you posted it.

  6. My senior year of high school I LIVED on strawberry starburst candies. I could buy packs of only strawberry flavor, so they had them at some point. I bought them from a vending machine and they came in a pink pack that looked just like the original flavor, but without the restpf the flavors. I don’t know if they are only distributed to the Southeastern Idaho area, (which is kind of in the twilight zone) or if the lady answering the phone may just not know all there is to know about them. If you find them, please let me know!!!

  7. Steve in Chicago (July 14,2008) says:

    There WAS an “only-strawberry” pack of Starburst!!! They sold the pack back in the 80’s. I remember because me and my friends used to steal them from the local grocery store in Chicago! : P
    They were the best. I’ve argued with my wife about it several times. She thinks I’m crazy and doesn’t believe that they made the strawberry only pack. And try as I might, I can’t find anything online to back up my memory. But I know i didn’t imagine it!

    • I remember this from when I was a kid. We would go to yard sales every Saturday morning and I would get the pink pack. It was in the 80’s. It had Strawberry, Strawberry Watermelon, Strawberry Banana and one other Strawberry flavor. It was my favorite.

  8. Brett Nordquist says:

    Steve in Chicago, I believe you! I vaguely remember being able to buy a bag of only strawberry Starbursts. But I’ve only told a few people who end up not believing me.

  9. Okay you obviously need something to do-

  10. dave near chicago says:

    @Steve in Chicago (July 14,2008)

    YES!!! Finally someone who doesn’t scoff when I mention that there was an all pink pack of starburst, too bad they’re my third favorite flavor, nice!

  11. I really think you might be remembering Laffy Taffy squares in the pink wrapper. They did have a strawberry flavor and yes you could buy a package of just strawberry. They were sort of like Starbursts, expect a little harder. They were very popular in the 70-80s.

  12. I seem to remember a lime flavor when they first came out.Of coarse I remember when starbursts had a extra ,white wrapper inside ………

  13. OMG!!! As I was reading this I felt like I had written it!! I LOVE the strawberry….don’t care for the lemon….and have always wanted a lime only flavor!!! This was tooooo funny…I totally relate to the writer of this post….. Hope one day we can buy strawberry only once again……I’ve tried shopping at the bulk candy places…with no luck…yet…!! :)

  14. My favorite is lemon then orange next comes cherry. I don’t care for the pink ones. I’ll eat them last. In my opinion, they put way too manystrawberry chews in the bag and I’ve always wondered why. My hubby likes them the least also. He prefers the cherry chews.

  15. That bag full of only strawberry candies is an awesome idea. Or better yet, a way to buy individually; without picking out of a candy bin. Be sure to follow-up. If you don’t, I will. Certainly there would be a lot of money behind this idea for Mars.

  16. ok, i just want to know why the candy has to be so small. Can’t they make starburst the size of say, tootsie roll-the size with the sections you used to bite off and count how many chews it took? A snickers bar, or – hey maybe just one big cake the size of a Bologna sandwich. I mean, really- I get on a roll- you can’t have just one, and unwrapping each really slows down the whole process (wow-just finished cherry and I now popped in a watermelon- LOVED IT!) That’s it – tootsie roll- each section a different flavor.!

  17. Margaret says:

    I keep a bowl of Starburst on my desk at work and have become the most popular person in the office. :-)

    I would say 80% of people who stop by regularly want the strawberry ones. They have been known to pounce when they hear a new bag ripping open so that they can be the first to fish out the Strawberries.

    Your blog entry prompted me to send an email to Mars. Do you think we could create a groundswell of support?

  18. yeah i def want just the strawberry oness. they're soooooooooooooo good. pls some1 let me know if they decide to do so..
    thanks

  19. Lana Leonard says:

    My daughter is getting married and she would like to have the pink starbursts to give her guests. They hold a special memory for her and her future husband. Is there any to purchase 100+ pink starbursts? I really apppreciate any information you could give me.
    Please e-mail me at lanaleo@qwest.net.

  20. I would love to purchase bags of Starbursts containg only the strawberry flavor!

  21. Just came online to see if I could get strawberry only starburst and bumped into this site, so it seems I’m not alone. I hate to waste the lemon and orange but I really don’t care for them. Mars I hope your reading this, seems like you could increase sales. Maybe try bagging all the flavors individually, like when the members of K.I.S.S. all released there own albums obviously everyone has there favorites. By the way they did at one time have a lime flavor it got replaced by the cherry, too bad, that was my second favorite.

  22. I think they should have made an all strawberry bag of starburst a long time ago!!!strawberry is my favorite then orange,lemon and I hate and won’t even eat fruit punch!! At least they could come out with an all strawberry bag at easter or christmas or one of the holidays!! I believe they would make a ton of sells! I will call the hot line and have a little talk with them!

  23. my 10 yr old broke her grown up tooth on a starburst the other day! Taking Ashley to the dentist tomorrow.She is in tons of pain! Also upset because starburst was her favorite candy.

  24. Sobia kausar says:

    Is starburst suitable for vegetarians and muslims

  25. Very helpful. It’s clear that strawberry is the best flavor, and orange and lemon are downers and should be removed. Why Mars can’t come to terms with that is beyond me.

  26. Yeah, the strawberry are pretty damn great. But it seems to me that you are decidedly ignoring the chewy-wonderfulness of the orange flavored neatly wrapped squares of god-given creamy-sour goodness.
    I can agree that the lemon/yellow ones would hardly be missed (I mean;… yellow? Blah… yellow sux), I could only imagine that the 2 or 3 who might object to getting rid of the lemon flavor could easily go get some Lemon heads and leave the rest of us alone to enjoy what we rightfully own by proxy.
    I am totally on-board for a bright green LIME flavored “goodness-square” (FANTASTIC IDEA. I can taste it now…. yummmmy), might be a true epiphany of salivation. Perhaps even a Key-lime.
    Let me guess your other favorite… at least MY next/equal favorite are….. Skittles :p

  27. There was an all pink pack in the 80s! :) I’d say the orange ones should go.

Trackbacks

  1. […] I noticed a telephone number on the back and decided to give them a call. This isn’t the first time I’ve called a candy company. Experience tells me those who staff these hotlines are probably […]

  2. […] to this fel­low Pink-Starburst-loving guy who actu­ally called the Star­burst Candy Helpline (side note: Holy shit there’s actu­ally […]

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