According to Fortune, Americans spend more on candy at Easter than Halloween! With 700 million Peeps sold each year, and 16 billion Jelly Beans, not to mention all the chocolate bunnies, it’s not surprising, really. But what about the Easter candy that doesn’t sell? When does Easter candy go on sale and clearance? Inquiring minds want to know!
Easter candy goes on sale the day after Easter usually, but some stores mark down Peeps, Jelly Beans, and Chocolate bunnies, as well as other Easter products, days to a week beforehand, slashing prices as time passes. So to increase your chances of getting Easter candy 25-75% off, waiting is key.
Most times, candy and other Easter-themed products quickly sell because stores have carefully calculated inventory to meet demand. However, there are inevitably some leftovers because stores also over buy to ensure they have enough. I, like most moms, want a good deal, so it’s important to pay attention to sales and clearance practices.
Read on to learn more about getting your Easter dollar’s worth on candy!
Where Does Unsold Easter Candy Go?
Despite the price deflation after Easter, not all the candy is still sold. It’s hard to believe, but true. To create room for the next holiday’s stash (hmmm, after Easter that means….Memorial Day items? Or maybe 4th of July merchandise?), companies/store managers move unsold items out. So where does unsold candy go?
Candy and chocolate have a long shelf life. Leftover items not sold at the holiday or from clearance are moved to warehouses for storage until the next year. This also means customers who do take advantage of clearance candy can feel confident it will stay fresh long after the holiday has passed.
Note, there are also instances where retailer might choose to donate leftover holiday candy like from Easter rather than put it in storage for later use. They do this for often to save retail storage space or for tax purposes it might make more financial sense. As well, if the candy is approaching it’s expiration, they’d rather donate it to be used instead of throwing it out.
Even though candy and chocolate can last past holidays, it’s not forever, so there are expiration dates to consider. Also, candy and chocolate must be stored carefully to prevent melting or sticky residue seeping through wrappers. We’ll look more at expiry dates and situations where candy and chocolate shouldn’t be consumed in the next section.
Does Easter Candy and Chocolate Go Bad?
To be sure, you can get Peeps (in just about any variety) all year long from the Peep Store (yes, we’ve been there at National Harbor) or from Amazon. So it’s possible to eat Easter candy all year. But that being said, does Easter candy and chocolate go bad?
Most types of candy and chocolate are made of sugar and other artificial and natural preservative ingredients, giving them a long shelf life. However, hard, soft, and chocolate varieties are safe to eat even passed expiry dates for the most part, though their flavors will lose potency.
Keeping that in mind, though, you can prolong flavors of candy and chocolate by properly wrapping and storing them. Chocolate especially can be prolonged with refrigeration, or even freezing.
Come to think of it; chocolate really has no expiry date. It mostly has a’ best before date’, indicating that it is yummier before the date inscribed on it. Of course, chocolate lasts longer if the package is unopened. I personally like to keep it in the fridge anyway, and this extends it well past Easter, or whenever you bought it.
Also, note that there is a difference in types of chocolate and which lasts/tastes better longer. Milk variety, though very popular in the US especially with kids since it’s ‘sweeter’, has a shorter life span, so to speak. It’s best for 8-10 months since it has a large percentage of dairy in it.
The more expensive and specialty chocolates that use heavy cream are more likely to go bad or even spoil faster, too. Dark/bitter chocolate will last a lot longer.
As for candy, the more cocoa content in it, the longer its flavor is bound to last as well.
You may also enjoy these Easter-related articles from ‘Hopeful Holidays’:
- Easter Bat and Other Things That Don’t Belong in Holy Week
- Come On, Google. No Easter Doodle?
- What Is a White Easter Egger? (Explained)
Where Can I Get Discounted Candy After Easter?
Clearance sales normally offer budget-friendly purchases. There are some stores that provide a better deal on Easter candy, or better sales after Easter has passed to be sure. So what stores provide the best discounted candy after Easter (or any holiday)?
Walmart, Costco, Sam’s Club, and BJs provide good pricing on Easter candy before the holiday. Yet, often specialty shops, grocery store chains, and your local drugstore are better for after-holiday sales as these places need to move merchandise quickly and generally have limited shelf space.
So if you’re looking for candy or any other discounted Easter commodity after the Easter holiday, you should check one of these:
- Specialty Shops like Giannios Candy Company and See’s Candy.
Check your local area for specialty candy stores. Often they are more expensive in the beginning-before the holiday-but once it’s past, they have the best deals. You’ll get quality candy, good for gift giving or eating yourself, at deep discounts. These stores usually don’t have the space to keep candy on shelves or store in warehouses, so they need to move it out quickly, prompting them to give customers a great deal! Many of them are willing to ship too, and don’t charge for that, if you buy enough from them, so don’t be afraid to look online as well!
- Walgreens: Walgreens, both in store and online, drugstore provides its customers the opportunity to get candy at 60-70% off. Pickup and same-day delivery services are also made available. However, because Walgreens also has walk-in stores, the discount rates in these stores vary, meaning you can actually get some great deals if you go there in person!
- Party stores: Stores like Party City often provide Easter and other holiday candy, too. Like with drugstores and specialty stores, they usually need to move ‘old’ merchandise to make room for the next holiday set, motivating them to slash prices often in half or more.
- Lastly, be sure to check out the holiday section at your grocery stores, too. Places like Kroger, Food City, or Wegman’s up north are prone to cut Easter candy by 50-75% after the holiday. And the longer it sits on the shelf, the steeper the discount! Be sure to look 2-3 weeks later and you’re likely to find some candy at great prices.
Besides those mentioned above, other online and walk-in stores offer mouthwatering discount deals on Easter candy and merchandise. Some of them include
- Rite Aid
- Home Goods
TIP for ‘Old’ Candy: Remember these candy and chocolates have a much longer shelf date than you think, so don’t be afraid to buy it as a gift! But of course, you don’t want to give someone Easter candy for their July birthday! Instead, take the candy or chocolate out of its packaging and put in a cute ‘Dollar Tree’ box or tin…or in a nice birthday gift bag. This works best if you can find candy/chocolate that’s not individually wrapped in Easter or other holiday paper.
However, these deals are short-lived and are only available while stock lasts and before they need to move them out to storage or donate. So to get the best candy deals, check back often during the 2-3 weeks after Easter to not miss out.
How Do I Use My Candy Coupon or Promo Code?
Coupon codes are another great way to save money through discounted sales. You can either generate these codes from websites online or get them from walk-in stores. So how do you use candy coupon and/or promo codes at stores?
First off, you most likely will need to download apps from either the stores or from coupon sites to get the digital code. When you go to check-out at the stores, simply present your code or coupon either by your phone or after printing out on paper to the store clerk.
However, there are some things to know in order to ensure you’re using the code or coupon properly and to be aware of store policy. For one, candy coupons, just like other types of coupons, are mostly one-time deals and can not be re-used.
Also, call ahead or talk to a manager about individual store rules or policy. Some stores, for instance, do not always acknowledge codes generated from online sources, especially outside of their company or franchise.
There are a whole lot of websites that accept coupon code trades for candy, though. Here are some basic steps for that:
- Sign in to the website.
- Select all the candy you want, then add them to your cart.
- Check out
- Scroll to the bottom of the checkout page and click the “Add coupon” option.
- Enter the code.
- Click on proceed.
Easy, isn’t it? These coupon deals are either free shipping for the candy, if purchased in bulk quantity, gift parcels attached to the purchased candy, or deducted price. All this is just a bid to enhance clearance sales to provide room for fresh candy. The advantage for you is that you can use this opportunity to get more candy for your sweet tooth.
How Did Easter Become About Candy?
You might have, at one point, or another wondered how candy became such a huge part of the Easter celebrations.
One thing is that in the weeks leading to Easter, Christians of the Catholic denomination observe a period of penance, exoneration, and self-denial known as Lent. Many, as part of their observance, abstain from candy for up to 40 days.
Others during Lent ‘give up’ chocolate, cake, and other sweets. So when Easter comes, they are more than ready to partake! On this day, they get to break this fast and have as much candy as they want to make up for the weeks past.
Now this is not the only reason for Easter candy sales, but it’s certainly some of the reason, given that Christianity is 1/3 of the world’s population and there are over 70 million registered Catholics in the US (that’s 22% of the US population, by the way!).
Wrapping Up Easter Candy On Sale And Clearance
So to wrap it up, Easter candy is likely on sale and clearance the day after Easter for most stores. However, there are stores that put Easter candy on sale prior to Easter, as much as a week ahead.
Stores put Easter candy on sale or clearance in order to move out excess ‘leftover’ candy and make room for new merchandise. Though to be clear, candy and chocolate have a long shelf-life, so sometimes stores will move leftovers to warehouses for next holiday season.
The long shelf-life of candy and chocolate is good for the consumer too, as it’s perfectly fine to eat ‘old’ candy well after the holidays are done. So go ahead, eat those chocolate bunny ears in July!
For more Easter-related reading, I suggest these ‘Hopeful Holidays’ articles: