Today in 1952, PEZ received a U.S. patent for its famous dispensers, though it would take five more years before those dispensers realized their true potential and had characters’ heads on them.

Then again, PEZ was around for decades before those dispensers came along.


The word PEZ, by the way, is a truncated version of the German word Pfefferminz.

Inventor Eduard Haas III had come up with a new kind of peppermint candy.

Originally they were shaped into drops, but he later turned them into little bricks.

And that wasn’t the only change.

Haas thought PEZ could help people quit smoking, giving them a healthier habit than lighting up.

To reinforce that idea, he decided to do away with selling PEZ in metal tins and switch to a tall, thin container that looked like a lighter.

Oscar Uxa patented the first PEZ dispenser which not only looked like a lighter, it also made it easy to share the candies with others.

The first character on a PEZ dispenser, by the way, was a witch.

Movie and cartoon characters have been among the most successful, but to me the most unforgettable character was PEZ Boy, who dressed up as other characters to solve mysteries.

I want to know when we get a gritty reboot of that guy.


Not too long ago we told you about a greener kind of insulation that’s made from mushrooms.

Well, Treehugger now reports there’s a new player in the eco-friendly insulation game: popcorn.

They look like giant Rice Krispie treats that go in the wall.

The History of PEZ (

Researchers Make Insulation Board Out of Popcorn (Treehugger)

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Photo by Ingrid Taylar via Flickr/Creative Commons