We Just Found Out Where M&Ms Get Their Name From

Ashley Hunte
M&Ms are incredibly popular around the world.
Unsplash | tommao wang

M&Ms are some of the most popular, most recognizable candies in the world. But have you ever wondered where the candy got its name from? Maybe you already know, or you just thought you knew.

But recently, people have been figuring out its name's true origins, and it honestly makes a whole lot of sense.

M&Ms have been around for a long time.

A large jar filled with M&Ms candies.
Unsplash | Robert Anasch

First originating in 1941, M&Ms have been on store shelves for a good 80 years at this point. Since 2003, they've been available for sale in over 100 countries.

Many people thought they knew where the name came from.

The red M&M, looking pretty speculative.
Giphy | M&M’S Chocolate

Chances are, you probably thought that the M's in M&Ms came from "mmmmm", or the sound you more than likely make whenever you put one of these delicious snacks in your mouth.

But that's actually not the case at all.

A bowl of M&Ms.
Unsplash | SHOT

In fact, the name origin of M&M doesn't really have a lot to do with how delicious they are (though it does make for a pretty neat coincidence, at least).

M&Ms was actually named after its two founders.

A snack size package of M&Ms
Unsplash | Behnam Norouzi

One M is for Forrest Mars, Sr., the son of Frank Mars (the founder of the Mars company). He got the idea in the 1930s after traveling overseas and seeing Smarties in the UK. Smarties have a hard shell that prevents them from melting quickly.

So he teamed up with the second M, Bruce Murrie.

Plastic M&M mascot figures, including the green, blue, and yellow ones.
Unsplash | Syed F Hashemi

Murrie was the son of Hershey's president, F.R. Murrie. Though both had ties with rival chocolate companies, they joined forces to make the iconic chocolate we still know today.

The way the chocolate doesn't melt easily also helped form its slogan.

A woman trying to take a bite out of the red M&M.

The popular slogan "Melts in your mouth, not in your hands," precisely showcases the candy's ability to not melt when you hold it (but it still tastes great).

Today, there are so many more flavors of the iconic treat.

The yellow M&M mascot, who looks somewhat bashful.

You can get pretty much any kind of M&M, from ones with nuts, caramel, pretzels, and even with different kinds of fruit. There's literally an M&Ms candy for everyone.

The popular treat was also meant to feature in 'E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial.'

Cookies made with M&Ms instead of chocolate chips.
Unsplash | American Heritage Chocolate

Production wanted to feature M&Ms in a scene, but the company refused to let the movie use their candy. So they turned to Hershey instead.

And Hershey allowed the moviemakers to use Reese's Pieces.

E.T. taking a drink out of the fridge.

When E.T. released in 1982, Reece's Pieces sales skyrocketed that following year. And to think, it could've been M&Ms instead. Welp, that's definitely their loss (though they don't seem to be hurting that much).

Knowing the name origin definitely changes things.

The brown M&M next to text that reads, "Our job is done."
Giphy | M&M's UK

Like, it almost feels like everything we thought we knew was a lie. Even if it's something as simple as what M&Ms actually stands for. But knowing about it makes me kind of appreciate the candy a little more.