1922 Minties invented by Sweetacres

The original digestive nougat mint

Minties were invented in 1922 by James Noble Stedman and marketed under the Sweetacres brand. They were patented in 1926. The chewy peppermint lollies became famous for the advertising line “It’s moments like these you need Minties”.

James Noble Stedman’s father, also named James, was the son of a convict. In 1854, at the age of 14, he began working for a Sydney confectioner William J. Cates. The firm went through several changes of ownership over the next 20 years and in 1875 James (senior) bought the business.  He later opened a new shop and factory, Stedman’s Imperial Steam Confectionery Works. Many members of his family were involved in the company. Among his popular sweets, sold under the ‘Lion’ brand, were peppermints, brandy balls and bull’s eyes.

The family firm continued under the directorship of James Noble Stedman. In 1918 he moved the factory from the city to Rosebery and, after a staff competition, named the new site Sweetacres. This became the brand under which a range of sweets, including Minties, Fantales and Jaffas were sold.

The line “It’s moments like these you need Minties” first appeared in 1926, with cartoons depicting humorous moments. Over the years, the cartoons were drawn by many different artists, including some responsible for legendary cartoon strips such as Ginger Meggs (James Bancks), Bluey and Curley (Alex Gurney) and Chesty Bond (Syd Miller).

James Stedman-Henderson’s Sweets Ltd changed hands several times from the late 1960s onwards. Taken over by Hoadleys in 1968, then Rowntree in 1971, it eventually became a part of the international company, Nestlé when Nestlé took over Rowntree in 1981. Minties are now sold under the Allens brand which was also bought by Nestlé in 1987.

In New Zealand, the Minties brand is owned by Cadbury and they are sold under the Pascall name. And they’re made in Thailand.  Strangely, those sold in Australia are made in New Zealand.

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