Opinion: Pumpkin spice season is back

Krispy Kreme has released a line of pumpkin spice doughnut offerings
Krispy Kreme has released a line of pumpkin spice doughnut offerings | Business Wire

If you think the pumpkin spice season is starting earlier and earlier, you are not wrong.

This year, 7-Eleven released its pumpkin spice lineup on Aug. 1: Pumpkin spice latte, pumpkin coffee and pumpkin syrup. To go with those pumpkin drinks, they also have an apple cider doughnut and pumpkin muffins.

On Aug. 7, Krispy Kreme released its pumpkin spice doughnut offerings: Pumpkin spice cheesecake swirl, pumpkin spice maple pecan; pumpkin spice original glazed and the pumpkin pie cake doughnut. To go with those doughnuts, Krispy Kreme is also offering hot, iced or frozen pumpkin spice lattes and hot or iced pumpkin spice coffee.

Dunkin’ released its fall menu on Aug. 16: A pumpkin spice latte, nutty pumpkin coffee and pumpkin swirl to add into hot or iced drinks. If you want to take pumpkin spice pods home with you, K-Cup pumpkin pods are also available. Of course the pumpkin spice continues with the baked goods offerings: a pumpkin cake doughnut and doughnut holes, plus a pumpkin muffin. Coming on Sep. 1 are Goldfish Dunkin’ Pumpkin Spice Grahams. Let me know what your kids think.

And then the one that started the craze: Starbuck’s Pumpkin Spice latte will be in stores near you on Aug. 24. This year marks 20 years since taste engineers came up with the combo that loyal fans know and love. Starbucks is also offering three additional offerings: the iced pumpkin cream chai tea latte and an iced apple crisp oatmilk shaken espresso, both new this year, and pumpkin cream cold brew, launched in 2019.


Pumpkin spice everything

Who knew that adding some spices and a cute picture of a pumpkin could generate so much revenue? Pumpkin spice — which is just a combination of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice and cloves, is a big money maker. According to Forbes, it’s a $500 million-plus industry and it seems like everyone wants in on the market.

In addition to hot drinks and doughnuts, here are some other pumpkin spice offerings: There’s pumpkin bread, pumpkin pie, marshmallows, Oreos (not my favorite — I thought they tasted like a candle), Twinkies, Cheerios, Frosted Mini-Wheats, oatmeal, oat milk, creamer, cream cheese, whipped cream, refrigerator rolls, pudding, yogurt, snack bars, ice cream, cookies, cookie dough, English muffins, bagels, beer, potato chips, mochi, empanadas, peanut butter, malted milk balls, protein drinks and even Ramen that now come in pumpkin spice. In nonfood items, there are candles, soap, air fresheners, toilet fresheners, lip balm, deodorant, shampoos, body wash, conditioner, household cleaner, perfume and even scented light bulbs.

Finally, just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. Kraft tried introducing pumpkin spice mac and cheese in 2020. It’s no longer available for purchase, but if you really want to try it, there are plenty of recipes online. Mmmm.

Holly Richardson is the editor of Utah Policy.