Tic Tac is a tiny breath mint sweet that was first launched in 1969, by the Italian chocolate and confectionary manufacturer Ferrero. It was the first mint to be sold in a small, pocket-sized plastic container. During this year, man also set foot on the Moon for the first time.
The two original flavours were Refreshing Mints and Orange Drops, but let's have a look at another top ten facts about Tic Tac...
During the first days of production, the sweet was given the very forgettable name of "Refreshing Mints". Thankfully, the name was changed to Tic Tac during 1969, which is based on the sound made from opening and closing the flip lid. However, some sources suggest the name stems from the noise made from rattling the container.
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Although the container has barely changed, the Tic Tac logo has changed eight times. The very first logo in 1969 was a green square with an orange frame, and looked quite ghastly. Later in 1969, the logo became a blue-green (turquoise) and white heart shape, and this remains my favourite of all the logos.
A green colour was introduced later in 1970 and the background became square. This shape was used until 1980, when the more familiar leaf shape was introduced. The same font was used until 2006, although the leaf logo gained a black edging in 2008.
A new font was in introduced in 2006, which is still used today. The leaf shape has remained the same since then, although with a couple of minor modifications.
In the second half of the 1970s (from 1976), a wide range of new flavours were introduced, including Aniseed, Cinnamon, Orange and Lime, Peppermint, Powermint, Spearmint, Sour Apple, Mandarin, Tangerine, Berry, Strawberry, Fresh Orange, Orange and Lime, Wintergreen and Pink Grapefruit. However, not all of these flavours were available in every country.
For people looking for a low calorie snack, then Tic Tac is an excellent choice. Many flavours are just one and a half calories, including the original mint flavour.
It's not just the UK where Tic Tac is popular. The sweet is sold around the world in the following flavours; Fresh Mint, Lime & Orange, Cherry Cola, Fruit Adventure, Berry Bliss and Citrus Mix.
The following screenshot is from a 1975 TV advert is promoting a new cinnamon flavour and a new slogan "Why flick a sweet with one flavour when you can flick a sweet with two?". A series of ads were shown in the 1970s and 80s featuring a retro comic strip style animation with a plain clothed police detective. In this one, he escapes from a room full of gun-wielding American gangsters, by flicking a Tic Tac at the chandelier. They turn around to shoot at it, and he makes his escape while their backs are turned.
During the 1990s, the first twin flavour packs were launched, with each one containing two separate flavours, which were Tangerine and Lime, Orange and Grape, and Berry and Cherry.
A Popcorn flavoured Limited Edition was launched in the UK during the summer of 2016. The container featured red and white stripes in the style of the boxes of popcorn sold in cinemas, with an explosion graphic.
In recent times, a new "limited edition" has been appearing every year in the UK. Sometimes they are based on a popular fizzy drink. Sprite Lemon-Lime was launched in 2023, but there has also been a Coca-Cola flavour. In 2015, Minions Banana and Mandarin flavours were launched to coincide with the Minions film. Pink Grapefruit was also released for a limited time.
In January 2018, a new line of Tic Tac Sugar-free Gum launched in three flavours; Watermelon, Freshmint and Spearmint. However, they were not launched in the UK, although some online stores import them from the U.S. and sell them for 79p each.
Despite Ferrero being an Italian company, the pocket sweet is not actually made there. In fact, around 35% of Tic Tacs are manufactured at a factory in the city of Cork, Ireland. There are also factories in India, Ecuador, Canada and Australia.
Of course, although the mini sweet is a handy way to enjoy a low calorie burst of mint or fruit flavours in the mouth, some people will prefer a longer-lasting boiled sweet such as the classic Fox's Glacier Mints.
I hope you enjoyed reading our top ten facts about Tic Tac pocket sweets.
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