Thank you to djgagnon who wrote in response to this post to let me know that they had clove lifesavers in Canada as recently as the 1970s. That information sent me off on a tangent (not hard to do!) and I discovered some other interesting lifesaver-related facts:
“One of the first successes in the marketing of Lifesaver candies came when they were successfully sold to saloon owners. Prior to this time, saloon owners offered their patrons free cloves to chew as a way to freshen their breath. Lifesavers began to be sold to saloon owners instead of the cloves.” (source)
Clove lifesavers were manufactured until 1981 when the company was bought out by Nabisco, who also discontinued Vi-O-Let, Lic-O-Rice and Cinn-O-Mon due to poor sales. (source)
Anyone out there remember eating clove lifesavers? Were they good? What about Vi-O-Let? It’s hard to imagine eating a flower-flavored candy.
athousandwinds: “They are still selling clove Lifesavers in some retro stores and in Amish areas.”
romanze: “In Britain, we have Parma Violets which are lovely and a little bit odd. I know they’ve been making them for decades (my mum had them as a kid and she was growing up in the 50s) but I don’t know just how old they are.”