Thinking of the chocolate candies known as M & Ms, in 1995 the tan M & Ms were replaced by which other color?

And the answer: blue.

Photo courtesy: Urbano Delvalle/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images. 

In 1995, the Mars candy company held a contest, asking fans to vote on which color would replace the tan-colored M&Ms. Voters could choose from blue, pink, and purple, and blue was declared the winner. Seven years later, another contest was held, and purple was added to the mix.

While M&Ms today are a beloved candy for children and adults across the globe, they began as a unique business venture: founder Forrest Mars sought to create a snack that wouldn't melt for troops fighting in the Spanish Civil War. After a disagreement with Frank Mars, his father and founder of the brand, Forrest packed up and moved to England, where he began manufacturing Mars bars for troops. He soon realized that a chocolate candy resistant to melting, such as those encased in a chocolate shell, would be easier to eat in summer months and less of a hassle. Coordinating with Bruce Murrie of Hershey's, Mars sought a partnership that would ensure a steady supply of resources needed to produce his new candy during the shortages of World War II. M&Ms (Mars & Murrie) were born.

Since their inception, M&Ms have made history a number of times. During World War II, the candy was exclusively sold to the U.S. military, enabling the heat-resistant and easy-to-transport chocolate to be included in American soldiers’ rations. Some decades later, M&Ms were the first candy to be brought to space. The same qualities that made the snack perfect for wartime consumption also allowed them to travel well into zero-gravity conditions.

Did you know?

From 1976 to 1987, there were no red M&Ms! A study released in the early 70s linked red no. 2, a popular food dye, to cancer. Although M&Ms didn't actually use the dye, Mars removed the candy to prevent confusion. Due to popular demand, red M&Ms returned in '87.

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