Institute of Candy Controversies
The International Mars® Bar
("Mars® Bar" is a registered trademark of the Mars, Inc.)

U.S. Mars Bar Wrapper
Fig. 1: U.S. Mars® Bar Wrapper
Canadian Mars Bar Wrapper
Fig. 2: Canadian Mars® Bar Wrapper

Abstract: A recent visitor to Canada noticed that the flag-ship candy bar of Mars Incorporated, had a distinctly different packaging, (Figures 1 & 2 above). This was all but ignored until a sample of the Canadian version reveiled differences that were indeed more than "skin-deep."

The first obvious difference was the lack of almonds in the bar from North of the border. In fact, the U.S. Mars® Bars proudly proclaim "Chocolate Almond Bar." As for its Canadian Cousin, the "full-sized" 58 gram versions sport the label "Energy Bar," with the following tag-line: "A Mars® Bar a day at work, rest and play." (Repeated of course in French). Some, but not all of the Canadian bars also include the warning: "May Contain Traces of Peanuts."

U.S. Mars Bar Cross Section
Fig. 3: Sample MB1010US
Canadian Mars Bar Cross Section
Fig. 4: Sample MB1010CA

The samples analylized here, (Figures 3 & 4 above), are of the small "Halloween Handout" varieties, available in both countries only around the time of the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. And while the size of the two bars varied greatly, (the U.S. "fun-size" being close to twice the size of its Canadian counterpart), the actual weight was not that much more. This is most likely due to the lower mass of the U.S. ingredients, (see table below), inspite of the inclusion of the almonds.

Country: Weight: Ingredients:
United States 19 grams
.6 ounce
Milk Chocolate, (Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Chocolate, Lactose, Skim Milk, Milkfat, Soy Lechithin, Artificial Flavor), Almonds, Corn Syrup, Sugar, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Skim Milk, Less than 2% - Butter, Milkfat, Lactose, Salt, Egg-Whites, Soy Protein, Artifical Flavor
Canada 17 grams
.5 ounce
Sugar, Corn Syrup. Milk Ingredients: Hydrogenated Soybean & Palm Oil, Cocoa Butter, Cocoa Mass. Modified Milk Ingredients: Malted milk Powder, Malted Barley Wheat Flour, Sodium Bicarbonate. Cocoa, Soy Lechithin, Salt, Dried Egg-White, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Artifical Flavour

Initial studies here at the Institute of Candy Controversies has determined that these are in fact, two distict species of candy bars. In fact, the Canadian Mars® Bar more closely resembles the U.S. Milky Way® Bar. However, due to lack of resources, this hypothesis is as yet un-tested. Further studies are underway to investigate this potential tie-in.

In the meantime, we urge Mars® Bars enthusiasts in all countries, to examine the evidence to date of these two different candy bars that share the same name. Imagine what a Mars® Bar from France, Great Britain, or even on the Red Planet itself would be like . . .


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