The rumour that green M&Ms are an aphrodisiac began in the 1970s when students reportedly picked the green ones out of the packages to feed to their love interests. Why the green M&Ms were attributed with this power is unclear – some speculate that the colour green is associated with healing and fertility. Decades later, the myth continues to circulate and in 1997, M&M/Mars took advantage of this by introducing a vampy female green M&M spokesperson (the only female M&M).
In 1984, journalist Stephen G. Bloom reviewed the idea in his article “Passion Power” in the Dallas Morning News, and the tabloid Weekly World News presented green M&Ms as “The Candy for Lovers”. A Shoebox Greeting card of 1986 alluded to the legend by releasing a card with the image of a dish full of green candies and the caption “I’m saving the green ones for you”. In 1997, the Wall Street Journal reported that Mars Inc. made a direct refernce to the rumour in their Super Bowl advertisement that year.
During the 2008 and 2009 Valentine’s Day seasons Mars sold bags of all-green M&M’s playing on the aphrodisiac story.