Four out of five candy message hearts are made by the New England Confection Company (NECCO) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, which has been making the hearts since 1902.
There’s a NECCO vice president who makes the final decision about which sayings to retire and which new ones will replace them, typically a half dozen of each of the 125 phrases in circulation at any given time.
Retired messages include HUBBA HUBBA, GROOVY, HANG TEN, DIG ME, and PAY ME.
New ones include AWESOME, E-MAIL ME, TXT ME, and BE MY ICON.
Writing the slogans is a science, as well as an art, since there are only so many letters you can print onto one of those tiny hearts.