Back in 2009, the makers of Necco wafers abandoned artificial colors and flavorings in their recipe. They thought the move would be a huge hit with customers. They were wrong.
Mail to the New England Confectionery Company increased twenty times and customers had a strongly negative reaction to the changes.
"When you're tampering with the family jewels for [the first time in] 150 years," Necco Vice President of Research and Quality Jeff Green said, "we expected some fallout. I don't think we expected it to be quite what it was."
Sales dropped by 35 percent and the company was forced to return to the original recipe. Green suspects a large segment of Necco customers are older and objected to the changes in the iconic treat.