Cotton Candy - Pure Confections
Floss is fun—especially organic floss in five fun flavors. Above, cinnamon and maple. This is a cotton candy experience you won’t forget! Photo by Melody Lan | THE NIBBLE.





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KAREN HOCHMAN is Editorial Director of THE NIBBLE.



September 2006
Last Updated December 2012

Product Reviews / NutriNibbles / NutriSweets

Pure Fun Confections Organic Cotton Candy & Candy Canes


And Cotton Candy History

Better For You Candy: Kosher, Vegan & Fair Trade



CAPSULE REPORT: Launched in October 2005, Toronto-based Pure Fun Confections created a play book for making candy the right way. The small but sweet line of five flavored cotton candies and a candy cane is “better for you,” made with unprocessed, evaporated organic cane sugar and other pesticide-free, organic ingredients. While the products will be beloved by kids, don’t dismiss this candy as kid stuff! It works as a tasty and creative garnish on waffles, in cocktails and in ways you’d never think to include lesser, “junk” candy.

When you arrive at the home page of Pure Fun Confections, you are greeted by the waltz of the Sugar Plum Fairy from the Nutcracker Suite. It makes you want to dance, as do the five delicious cotton candies. They are offered in the cloying-sounding flavors of bubblegum, cinnamon, licorice, maple and root beer. Trust us, they are delicious— gossamer clouds in your mouth. Not sticky sugar like the cotton candy of amusement parks and fairs, this is wholesome, airy sweetness melting on the tongue.

You can make cotton candy at home with an inexpensive machine.

Cotton Candy History

As historical introduction, it is frequently cited (including on the company’s website) that cotton candy, also known as spun sugar and candy floss, first appeared at the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition in St. Louis, commonly known as the St. Louis World’s Fair. This is not correct. At least 150 years earlier, in the mid-18th century, master confectioners in Europe and America hand-crafted spun sugar nests into as Easter decorations and made webs of silver and gold spun sugar for elaborate dessert presentations. According to The Dictionary of American Food and Drink, the debut of the product we know as cotton candy took place in 1897 in Nashville. Candymakers William Morrison and John C. Wharton invented an electric machine that allowed crystallized sugar to be poured onto a heated spinning plate, pushed by centrifugal force through a series of tiny holes. In 1904, at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition, Morrison and Wharton sold the product, then known as “fairy floss,” in cardboard boxes for 25 cents a serving. Though the price equaled half the admission to the fair itself, they sold 68,655 boxes! You can read more about it and other details of the history of cotton candy on Food Timeline, a wonderful reference website.

At least in those days, any colors and flavors used were natural. Since then, “food science” has substituted artificial colors and flavors in the cotton candy sold at fairs. Pure Confections may make the purest floss ever, using unrefined evaporated cane juice instead of refined sugar, plus natural colors, while modernizing the product with natural flavors that appeal to today’s palates. Some of the finest restaurants now serve cotton candy as part of the dessert experience, and you can too—whether as a topper for another dish or by itself in a fancy bowl.

Pure Fun: What’s In It?

Quite simply, the cotton candy is air-spun evaporated cane juice and natural fruit and vegetable coloring.

As organically-certified food, the cotton candy is made from materials grown without pesticides or genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and has no artificial coloring or flavoring. In addition, it contains no cholesterol, no trans fats, no chemicals, no synthetic flavors and no artificial FD&C colorants. It is free of gluten and known allergens.

How To Have Fun With It

You can check the Pure Fun website for recipe ideas, including spider webs made of the licorice floss. Some of our favorite applications:

  Licorice Pure Confections
Pure Confections cotton candy flavored with licorice. Photo by Melody Lan | THE NIBBLE.
  • Snack right out of the tub—try cotton candy instead of popcorn while you’re watching DVDs (one serving is 60 calories, and it’s fat-free)
  • Garnish your favorite desserts: ice cream, pie, pudding (if it’s a birthday, take a cupcake or a scoop of ice cream, top it with a garland of floss and put a lit candle in the center)
  • Garnish any food that uses a syrup or sweet flavoring—pancakes, French toast or waffles, e.g.—and the natural flavor of the floss will melt in
  • Add some to hot chocolate, coffee or tea
  • Garnish a cocktail (the website offers recipes for Cotton Candy Shooters and a Cotton Candy Martini)

Some of our favorite matches:

  • Licorice floss in a martini or in anisette liqueur
  • Maple or cinnamon floss on a baked apple or hot cereal
  • Root beer floss on a root beer float

The company suggests that sucking on the maple cotton candy will relieve hiccups by getting the nerves that regulate breathing back in sync with each other. Had we come down with the hiccups, we could have tested this remedy!

Candy Canes

Candy canes are said to have originated in 1670 with the choirmaster at the Cologne Cathedral in Germany. He gave sugar sticks to his young singers to keep them quiet Candy Canesduring the long Living Crèche ceremony. In honor of the holiday, he had the candies bent into shepherds’ crooks. In 1847 in Wooster, Ohio, a German-Swedish immigrant named August Imgard decorated a small blue spruce tree with paper ornaments and candy canes. But it wasn’t until the turn of the century that the red stripes were added and peppermint flavor became the norm.

Carry on the tradition with organic Peppermint Pure Fun Candy Canes with a hint of cherry flavor. They’re ll natural and all delicious!  You’ll see what you’ve been missing the moment you taste one.

And you’ll realize, cotton candy and candy canes are the stuff dreams are made of, no matter how many years you’ve been dreaming.


COTTON CANDY in Bubblegum, Cinnamon, Licorice, Maple and Root Beer
CANDY CANES in Peppermint

Certified kosher by Orthodox Union

Certified organic by Quality Assurance International

Fair Trade Certified

  • Tub, 60 g /2.12 Ounces*
    (Four Servings)
    $6.00 Suggested Retail

*Cotton candy is airy and thus doesn’t weigh much

Pure Confections Cotton Candy
A celebration of cotton candy (or is that a festival of floss?).
The flosses are packaged in airtight, reusable plastic tubs with a convenient handle.

Pure Fun products are carried at Whole Foods Markets and other fine retailers.

Prices and product availability are verified at publication but are subject to change.

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