Are Gushers Candy? The Debate That Has Divided Action Network’s Editorial Staff

Are Gushers Candy? The Debate That Has Divided Action Network’s Editorial Staff article feature image

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With the 2023 NBA All-Star break in the rear-view and games not yet resumed, NBA Twitter turned to a familiar pastime on Tuesday: Debating whether Nikola Jokic, currently a -240 favorite to win NBA MVP, would be worthy of winning three straight MVPs.

It's a feat no one has accomplished since Larry Bird, which has NBA fans heated when it comes to debating whether Jokic "deserves" to be NBA MVP.

Indeed, debate tore the Action Network Slack apart on Tuesday — but it wasn't about Jokic and the NBA MVP.

Andrew Lynch, Executive Editor

Are Gushers Candy?

Is a hot dog a sandwich? Is water itself wet? You've seen the debates. You've probably engaged in them. But now, Action Network presents the Debate of All Debates: Are Gushers candy?

The question has split our company's editorial staff nearly in half. While some argue the contents of Gushers are candy-esque and the packaging lends itself to candy, others say their manufacturer and location in stores do the opposite.

So, once and for all — are Gushers candy?

Pete Ruden, College Football Editor

Who cares about betting picks, the people want to know if Gushers are really candy.

Carmine Carcieri, Overworked NCAAB Editor

When I interviewed for this job, being part of a company that put forth this type of investigative journalism was clearly a big selling point.

William Boor, Another Guy We Found

The results of this poll are certain to divide our editorial team for months.

Ryan Collinsworth, College Sports Senior Editor
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The Poll Results Are In: Action Network Cannot Agree On Anything

What began as innocent banter between editors Ryan Collinsworth and Pete Ruden quickly turned into a full-scale editorial debate when Collinsworth put the issue to a poll.

Poll:Pete Ruden believes that Gushers are not candy. Is this his worst opinion ever?

Option 1: Yes. Pete is overthinking things, as usual. Gushers are obviously candy.

Number of Votes: 8

Option 2: Idk, hadn't really considered this before, but maybe Pete has a point. Either way, stop bullying him.

Number of Votes: 9

Andrew Lynch, Noted Anarchist

What if I believe 2 is correct but I don't want to show my support for Pete?

I am a real American, I'll vote twice!

Andrew Lynch, Executive Editor

Poll-Initiator Ryan Collinsworth Doubles Down

Justice rests with the 1's — human compassion on the side of the 2's.

Ryan Collinsworth, College Sports Senior Editor

The "Fruit Snacks" Delegation Weighs In

I’m riding with Pete. Gushers are fruit snacks, which obviously means there is actual fruit in them.

Malik Smith, NBA Senior Editor

Equivocation from the MLB Guy

My particular issue with this poll is the framing of the question. I answered with Ryan because I believe Gushers are candy.

However, he asked "is this Pete's worst opinion?" and my answer to that would be no, because Pete's worst opinion is that he thinks positively about the state of Iowa and the prospects of the sports programs at the university in Iowa City.

Collin Whitchurch, MLB Senior Editor

Uncle Mitch vs. Rootin' Tootin' Pete Ruden

Nobody loves Rootin' Tootin' Pete Ruden more than me, but he's a young man. He clearly rushed in with a bad take, likely based on a poorly thought-out idea of how the world works here. A young man's folly!

Yes, Gushers are candy. They clearly lie within a major Candy sub-category, the Gummy vertical. They are not a fruit snack, which falls into a more nebulous "Dessert" designation, because they are gelatin-based, which Gushers are not. If you've eaten a Gusher followed by a Welch's fruit snack recently (which as a father I do with great frequency), you'd know immediately that they don't share nearly anything in common. One is clearly the empty calories of a sugary, gooey confectionary delight, and the other is more like a tiny, hard bit of Jell-O. And no one would call Jell-O candy.

Furthermore, despite their name, even the packaging of Gushers makes no bones about it being a Candy. It does not offer a fruit-based implied soft sell like a Welch's. No, they boast the unequivocal hard sell of a delicious candy. It's also why there are like five Gushers in a pouch instead of 15, as in fruit snacks. Because they're candy.

Matt Mitchell, aka "Uncle Mitch," Head of Audio

I love Uncle Mitch. We've been through a lot together. We're basically neighbors. But please allow me to offer this rebuttal.

If you go to a grocery store and make a trip down the candy aisle, you're not going to find Gushers. Why is that, you might ask? Because they are fruit snacks manufactured by Betty Crocker. We all know Betty Crocker is not in the candy game. Calling Gushers candy is like calling a Pop-Tart a cookie. Do they share similar characteristics? Sure. But is it actually a cookie? Not a chance. In fact, Gushers are branded as a "fruit flavored snack," which is assuredly not candy.

Pete Ruden, Endearing Misfit & Editorial Scapegoat

Boy, sure is interesting that it is called a "FRUIT-FLAVORED SNACK" and not a fruit snack. Betty Crocker is in the profits game, and they got themselves a real tasty winner with this candy.

Uncle Mitch, Factually-Accurate Bully


Major Update: At precisely 4:30 p.m. ET, MLB Senior Editor Collin Whitchurch delivered a truly shocking revelation that has shaken our editorial staff to its very foundations. Whitchurch went full "galaxy brain" and dared to go straight to the source for clarification.

There you have it, folks. Gushers: Self-described as "chewy candy."

There remains a coalition of voices emphasizing that "Fruit Snacks" is actually listed firstin the website's search-page title. Indeed, this is likely a big win for The "Fruit Snacks" Delegation. Nevertheless, it is undeniable that the company regards its product as candy, which vindicates the voices clamoring for this outcome.

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