For a trade show that's supposed to be promoting the sale of happiness, the scene at the National Confectioners Association's annual Sweets & Snacks Expo at Chicago's McCormick Place is, well, grim. It's true that excessive cheerfulness is hard to come by at 8 a.m., even when there's free coffee, but the crowd in the grand ballroom, comprised mostly of grocery buyers and distributors, appears nearly lifeless. They sit silently in the ranks of long tables, each row punctuated by tiny plates of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, Hershey's Kisses, York Peppermint Patties and miniature Kit Kats. Every now and then, someone will absentmindedly grab a piece of candy, but mostly the... More >>>