Did Gum Stick?

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First Year Writing Seminar II 20 March 2011 Did Gum Stick? The International Chewing Gum Association (ICGA) article, “The Story of Gum” states, “No one can be absolutely certain who the first gum chewers were, but historians tell us that civilizations around the world were chewing natural gum thousands of years ago”. Some people chew gum for the satisfaction they get from it. They find chewing gum relaxes them and eases tension while, various other people believe it helps their concentration and keeps them alert. Research has also discovered it has special health benefits such as stimulating salvia to clean the surface of the teeth and assisting people to quit smoking. “Today, the average American chews 300 sticks of gum a year”, declares the Great Idea Finders, “Invention of Bubble Gum” (Did You Know?). Although, each kind of gum has its’ own individual formula, all kinds have a few basic ingredients such as powdered sugar, corn syrup or glucose, softeners, and of course, flavoring and coloring. Sugarless gum is prepared by using sugar substitutes for the powder sugar and glucose. In addition, all gum starts with a main ingredient, gum base. For example, mastiche, spruce, chicle, and paraffin wax have been used for gum bases throughout the centuries. Mastiche or mastic gum, comes from the resin in the Mastic tree. The Ancient Greeks chewed the mastic gum in 500 A.D. History also shows that in the early 1800’s, American Indians were chewing gum derived from the sap of Spruce trees. (ICGA Natural Gum is Discovered). During this same time period, many lumberjacks would collect and sale the resin from spruce trees. This gave John Curtis the idea to become the first manufacturer of spruce chewing gum, charging only one penny for two sticks of gum. Curtis made a batch of the gum with the help of his father. They “…rolled it out into a slab, cut it into

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