After shutting down operations last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Lehigh Valley company that produces the iconic Easter candy is back in operation.
- It is considered the sugary sign. It's the first sign of spring-- Peeps hitting the store shelves.
- People wait for this. Last year, the Lehigh Valley company that produces the iconic Easter candy-- it shut down its operations during the pandemic. But they're back. And Alicia is here now with the details. Alicia.
- Guys, Just Born is a family-owned company in Bethlehem. They've been making peeps since 1923. Almost 100 years. The factory went dark for nine months during the COVID shutdowns. They missed Halloween and Christmas. No peeps. But they're back, up and running, and pumping out Peeps just in time for Easter.
ROSS BORN: When we produce them, they-- they first are, what I would call, like, a nice, colorful blob of marshmallow, all right? But the key is our decorating. We put the eyes on-- or for the bunnies-- we put the eyes and the nose on, and it gives that-- it gives the product Peep-sonality. That's what we call it, Peep-sonality.
- The Peep-sonality. Just Born makes 2 billion Peeps per year. That's enough to circle the earth twice. In the early days, they were made by hand using pastry tubes, and it took 27 hours just to make one Peep. That's dedication. They're also cranking out other iconic favorites there in Bethlehem.
ROSS BORN: We do a whole lot more than Peeps. We do Mike and Ike, we do Hot Tamales, we even have a plant in Philadelphia that does Goldenberg's Peanut Chews. And that brand is over 100 years old.
- And speaking of old school, if you have never eaten a hot Peep off the production line-- I had to pull this video back from a few years ago, where I went to Bethlehem. Oh, this was so great. It was a really warm, hot, crunchy Peep. And once their tours are back up and running, go check them out. Big question, though, for peeps lovers-- the chicks or the bunnies? I'm team chick. I'm, like, you the classic.
- Yes, exactly.
- I love this video. I said, oh, that's Alicia in the plant working.
- Working the hair net, I like it.
- All right, the sweet treats are back.