Melinda Bailey, an employee of Marie’s Candies, fills a three pound, heart shaped box of chocolates in 2017. Valentine’s Day is the second busiest time of the year for the West Liberty company as they make all their candy by hand. Their first busiest holiday is Christmas. BILL LACKEY/STAFF

The king of Valentine’s candy in Ohio? Heart boxed chocolates

It’s official: Ohioans still love the classic heart-shaped boxes of candy which have been the cream of the Valentine’s crop for decades.

According to statistics released by, 53,000 of the familiar red classic are expected to be purchased and given out this year on Valentine’s Day to romantics throughout the state. Out of the candies which usually come standard in the boxes, it was also found that caramel-flavored chocolates are typically the ones that go first. There were no statistics offered on the infamous cherry cordial.

According to the report, over $1.7 billion is expected to be spent on Valentine’s candy this year. But surprisingly, the Buckeye State is shirking the trend nationwide in terms of what’s most popular.

The sweet bought most often in the U.S. are conversation hearts, the chalky, sugary treat well known for conveying little nothings like “Be Mine” and “I Love U” since 1902. The candies overthrew heart-boxed chocolates as the top Valentine’s seller nationwide in 2017, making up 10.3 percent of total candy sales for the holiday. Conversation hearts actually took second place in Ohio for the most popular candy bought for Valentine’s, followed by Wild Berry Skittles in third.

Ohio isn’t the only state bucking the conversation heart trend. Indiana also favors heart-boxed chocolates, while Pennsylvania prefers the Valentine’s variation of M&Ms. Kentucky prefers the more romantic route by favoring chocolate roses. Our neighbors to the north in Michigan, as well as West Virginia, fall in line with the nation and purchase candy hearts the most, according to the report.

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