It was even possible to eat your favourite characters,
in a rather sadistic act of fan worship !
I'm still trying to piece together the whole story.
But what I do know for sure is that the example opposite appeared in the Christmas 1972 Tobler Meltis trade catalogue and was the first year of production.(Meltis as in "Meltis Fruits")
And the photo above appeared in the Autumn 1976 version,by which time the company had become Tobler Suchard Limited.
And clearly a very incestuous industry,because some may also remember a time when the likes of Cadbury Schweppes and Rowntree Machintosh were actually 4 seperate companies.
The 2 surpising things about this bit of edible Herbage are that :-
1) It arrived over 2 years after the Adventures of Parsley was first shown.ie.pretty late in the day,even allowing for repeats.
2) It still proved so popular that it formed part of the Tobler Suchard range right upto and including their Autumn 1978 catalogue.Which is pretty amazing really.And whilst I can't be 100% sure that it was an unbroken run,there's also no reason to assume it wasn't.
And,judging by the 2 examples pictured,I'd imagine that the product also remained basically the same apart from some packaging tweeks.But that's just a guess.
The Herbs and The Adventures of Parsley Classic BBC kid's animation by Michael Bond
On this page ..... No Oompa-loompa's or golden tickets sadly,but Tobler Suchard did their best.
It's nice to be able to see the wholesale box as well as the product.And it's sufficiently colourful to think it might actually have graced the odd counter somewhere.Although most were probably emptied and the contents displayed seperately.
Pity we can't see the actual chocolates though.And even if an intact bar has survived somewhere,you can only imagine what sort of state it's in.
But there's certainly a realistic chance of finding some packaging .Because a surprising amount of empty confectionary wrappers crop up on ebay -ranging from chocolate bars to ice lollies. And there's even the ocassional,battle-weary display box if you're very lucky.
So we live in hope.
Small blown-up images from poorish quality paper,
so apologies for the quality.
The fact they were produced for so long is pretty darn impressive for an edible spin-off product -many of which are lucky to have a shelf life of 6 months,nevermind 6 years.
Although I suppose if they tasted good and kids' liked the look of them then the actual link to the series could've been almost coincidental.
I mean,how many kids eat Kellog's Frosties because they think Tony the Tiger's Greeeeeat ?
On a personal note,I'm sad to admit they completely passed me by.And it's quite a puzzling gap in my sweet and choccie cv actually.Because what I lacked in volume I more than made up for with variety.
Nothing unusual there I suppose,and maybe if they'd brought out individual character bars I'd have come across them more readily. (The Wombles examples spring to mind)
Not that I'd have kept any for posterity of course.Because,like most 70's kids,I'd have scoffed the lot and chucked the packaging without even giving it a thought (recycling ? ebay ? -where were they in the 70's ?)
Mind you,biting Sage's head off and sinking your teeth into Bayleaf's longjohns are probably best done without thinking about it too much quite frankly !
The "Teddy Bear" items are only included because of their close proximity to the Herbs display in the photo.
10p seems quite expensive for 1972.
But I suppose you got quite a lot of choccie for your money.