April Fools! 50-Carat Real Gemstone Lollipops Part of Chupa Chups Joke Campaign

chupa chupsChupa Chups had pulled a Willy Wonka on us when the confectionary company announced that they had released just five 50-carat precious gemstone “lollipops” into 150 countries worldwide. The announcement incited a frenzy across the globe as candy lovers searched for one of five real gemstone prizes –blue sapphire, ruby, emerald, diamond, and black pearl – disguised as an original Chupa Chups lollipop on the outside. Each of the gemstones were reported to be worth a few hundred thousand or more.

To get the buzz going and to lend some credibility to their claim, chief marketing officer Marco DiPaulo announced at a press conference in Milan that the campaign was received with overwhelming excitement in Argentina, where the first gemstone lollipop had been discovered by a 16-year-old boy.antonio

A YouTube video surfaced shortly after, supposedly showing a news report about lucky winner Antonio Lorenzo and his mother in a convenience store where he bought the gemstone sucker that was believed to be an uncut diamond. The report also shows him visiting a jeweler who estimates the value of the rough diamond to be approximately US $1 – 2 million.

Unlike the five Golden Tickets in Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory however, no such real gemstone lollipops existed. It was all part of an elaborate advertising campaign to create a buzz for the Chupa Chups brand. All of the hype came to an end when Chupa Chups various international Facebook fan pages let fans in on the hoax..

“Lollipops filled with rare stones?” asked the Australia-based Chupa Chups Facebook page. “Sorry to break the bad news, fans, but it’s April 1, and you know what that means! Sorry if we’ve left you feeling glum, but you can still grab your favorite Chupa Chups and suck away those sad faces!”

Added Chupa Chups’ Malaysia Facebook page, “Congratulations, everyone — you’re on the ball today! Yes, of course the precious stone range was just an April Fools’ prank. And did you see this video circulating across the Internet, too? Yep, that was just a prank as well. But unwrapping a Chupa Chups is like unwrapping a precious stone so you can still experience the joy.”