WRAL.com at the State Fair

The Economics of Cotton Candy

Posted October 20, 2007

Fair food is expensive. You don't walk in expecting to get a turkey leg for a dollar. But if you think in terms of weight, one particular kind of Fair food is pretty surprising.

Cotton candy, bought at one of the stands near Gate 11, cost $5. That's for a bag with 2.25 ounces. If I did my math right, that's about $2.22 an ounce, or $35.52 a pound.

For the price of one pound of cotton candy, you could buy almost three pounds of Oregon-grown "Music" variety garlic. (And you get the additional bonus of very few people wanting to share with you.) You could buy over five pounds of Folgers gourmet coffee, if you're looking for something a little zippier.

Hungry instead of thirsty? The cost of a pound of cotton candy will buy you a little over a pound of Bay Scallops in Cape Cod. Or maybe you'd prefer ham. The price of a pound of cotton candy won't be nearly enough for Alba Quercus Reserve ham, which won't be available until 2008. This pork comes super pricey at $160 a pound.

The very idea of eating a pound of cotton candy at a time makes my stomach do a slow roll. Perhaps sticking to 2.25 ounces at a time is the best idea...


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