If you get some Sweethearts candies this Valentine's Day, appreciate the journey those things have been on. It hasn't been easy getting them back into stores, but after a one-year hiatus, they'll be back with two new flavors.  Oh, and a lot more blanks.

Valentine's Day candy seems simple enough, but the process of getting it onto store shelves has been a marathon and not a sprint for the makers of Sweethearts candies.

It's not easy getting all of those messages stamped onto each individual heart, and because of issues with the printer, fewer hearts will have messages this year. Oh no!

The company also changed hands, and the new owners had to dig through old records to find the original recipe.  They didn't share it, but apparently, it involves more than straight sugar, and the process of getting it exactly right took some tweaking.

TIME magazine also said, "the original Sweethearts equipment from the former Necco factory in Massachusetts, was moved to another plant in a year-long process that involved transporting sixty truckloads of equipment and in some cases, lifting out larger pieces of equipment through the roof with a crane."  All for those little heart-shaped sugar cubes.  And because the move caused delays, it's possible there could actually be a heart shortage this year. CNBC said the candy hearts will be available at drugstores nationwide, but regional stores will have them in limited supply. I've heard that Walmart will be a good place to check.

To add to the candy drama, the company said it had trouble with the old printer and had to get a new one which was damaged, and that put them even further behind.  All of this means there will be fewer messages on the hearts this year, and a lot more blanks in the bag.

Ok, so now for the good news.  There will be two new flavors this year - banana and wintergreen.  And no, all hearts do not taste the same!  Each one is unique, and I will be fighting the kids for the banana ones, even if they do say, "Boogie," or "Time 2 Dance," or something weird.  They're still fun to suck on when you get a little hungry in church or before dinner when you need to quiet the growls and you can't find any grapes.

If you find one that says "Fax me," that's probably from a few years back so it may actually be a treasure from the original company.  Put that one on social media.  Otherwise, we'll be looking for “you rock” and “love me” and all of those slightly awkward romantic quips that we've come to know and love.


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