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Juicy fruit gum


Barbasol
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I recently bought a piece of Juicy Fruit gum. What I understood is after WW II ended the wrapper was replaced by one with a bright yellow backround and juicy fruit bracketed  between 2 chevrons. I also read that Juicy fruit was taken off the civilian market temporarily during WW II, but was still produced to be included in rations, is that correct? 

 

What puzzles me is the aluminum inner wrapper, because I learned that during the war de inner wrapper was made of red paper (until 1946), but in the G.I. Collectors Guide volume 2 I read that from februari 1944 the aluminum inner wrapper was re-introduced because there wasn't any shortage of materials anymore. 

 

Is this a wartime oiece of gum? or were these pieces of gum produced long after WW II? Just curious, because I love this wartime goodies.

 

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Because of the difficulty in sealing a wrap around single stick, gum in this form presented a more troublesome packing problem than gum in tablet form. All stick gum included in the early rations was packaged in an unsealed, dry wax paper wrap banded in a colored label. This package offered neither odor nor water-vapor protection.

 

When the three big gum companies, Wrigley, American Chicle, and Beech-Nut, switched from dry wax paper to a a laminated glassine and sulphite wrap in 1942, they took the first step towards improving the package. Although this package was substantially better than the dry waxed one, its wrap was not sealed, leaving the package far from efficient. The next improvement came when the Wrigley Company developed a method for sealing the laminated wrap with wax. Through the American Chicle Co. followed suit with a sealing feature, limitations of equipment prevented the Beech-Nut Co. from doing the same. 

 

When foil became available it replaced the laminated glassine and sulphite wrap. In 1944 foil-wrapped stick gum became standard and no further improvements were made. 

 

Until 16 March 1945 when QMC Tentative Specification CQD No.324 "Gum, Chewing" was issued , packing of gum was specified either in the various ration assembly specifications or, in the case of the K-Ration, in CQD No.22 "Ration, Type K, Confection Component". All specifications issued before the spring of 1944 called merely for the standard domestic package, without foil. After March 1944, foil was specified for packaging stick gum.

 

Gum was included in stick or tablet form:

C Ration

Combat Lunch

Jungle Ration

K Ration

Life Raft Ration

Mountain Ration

Parachute Ration

Ten-in-One Ration

 

Sticks were included in:

Combat Ration

K Ration

Ten-in-One Ration

 

Sticks of gum were also a component to Personal sustenance kits for the USAAF and US Navy. I have a US Navy Sustenance kit that has the exact gum you have pictured so I can confirm yours is WWII.

 

I do believe foil was never used on sticks of gum prior to the war, it was a newly introduced in 1944. So when you read "re-introduced", I think that was their misnomer.

 

 

 

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Dustin,

Thank you very much for your comprehensive answer, that is why this forum is such a good help. I bought  this piece of gum for 15 euros, in my opinion a bargain because in Europe prices can go up to 40 euros.

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  • 11 months later...
Jake Zenger

Dustin,

 

Thanks for your comprehensive answer here. I have an unopened K ration that I believe to be late war, probably 1944. Would be interested in your opinion of what type of gum would be inside. Not sure if there's a way to tell the type (stick or tablet) or even which gum company produced it based on which company packed the k ration (in my case, Patten Food Products)? I would venture to guess that the different food packers probably had contracts with certain companies to include in their packs? Like, perhaps Patten Food Products got all their gum from Wrigley. Would appreciate your insights. Thanks in advance. 

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TexRdnec

there's really no telling with that one but it's an early morale since it doesn't list the cereal bar so it's almost certainly stick gum as opposed to tablet gum

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As for contractor, rather supplier of the gum, probably couldn't determine who exactly. The components for the K Rations changed consistently from 1941 to 1945. By the time of these colored boxes, specifications state either the tablet or stick were included.  In the lineage they went from stick, to tablet, to tablet, to stick, then to either both. 

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