Halloween candy: How to store it so it lasts (and when you should throw it out)

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"Halloween Candy" by BefuddledSenses, CC By 2.0

When trick-or-treating is over, the true fun begins… eating all that candy!

Wondering how long you have to scarf it all down? Probably longer than you think. Here’s shelf life suggestions from the people who know candy best — the National Confectioners Association.

Chocolate

Milk and white chocolate can stay fresh for 8 to 10 months if its wrapped in foil and stored in your pantry or another cool, dark and dry place. Dark chocolate can be kept for 1 to 2 years.

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Caramel

Caramel, carmel, whatever you call it, can last 6 months up to a year if you cover it up and store it in a dark and dry place. Keep it next to the chocolate because you know they should be eaten together.

Jelly beans, fruit slices and other soft candies

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You don’t have to crush these candies. Keep these sweets in a covered candy dish away from heat and light. They’re good for 6 to 9 months or up to a whole year if you haven’t opened up the packaging.

Candy corn

Believe it or not, despite being almost entirely sugar, candy corn (and its cousins the candy pumpkins) probably won’t survive a nuclear explosion. If you haven’t gorged on all of these before Thanksgiving, store them in a covered candy dish and eat them within 3 to 6 months (or 9 months if you haven’t opened up the bag).

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Suckers, Lifesavers and other hard candies

For. Ev. Er. KIDDING. Actually up to a year if you keep them cool and dry. You can put these on your shelf or on your desk at work (as long as you don’t mind sharing).

Gum

Like candy corn, you can grab piece of Double Bubble or other gum to chew for 6 to 9 months if you keep it in a cool, dry, dark place.

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