I didn't think about gum for maybe twenty-five years. Then, I had kids. My oldest has no interest in gum, but my second child, he loves it. Gum, mints, really anything. So he asked for some gum when we were at a CVS recently, and I lead him to the candy section. To my surprise, there was an assortment of, basically, Trident. There was some Mentos gum, and other brands, but they were all, without exception, adult-oriented gums. Not a single oddity among them, nothing that would make the eight-year-old me want to buy them. They were all pale in color, mint-based, and kind of dull. He got some gum, and even seemed happy with it, but I felt like I'd been betrayed.
Okay, not betrayed, but maybe that a piece of my childhood had vanished without my knowledge.
Okay, not even that. I just thought it was odd that none of the gum of my youth was available in that store. No Hubba Bubba, no Bubblicious, no Bubble Tape, Fruit Stripe, nothing. I promptly forgot about the whole thing.
Then, Rom...in which I found this ad from 1980:
I remember this ad campaign, in which two kids would square off in an old west town, trying to see who could blow the best bubble. There's a record of these commercials on Youtube, too.
Gum fighters. Clever.
So I decided to see if Hubba Bubba is still out there. Turns out, it is.
It's made by Wrigley, the same folks who bring you the Chicago Cubs. Their website even has a nice little timeline detailing everything about the brand since its first appearance in 1979. At some point in the 1980s, they ceased producing this brand (for reasons unstated, though it was probably low sales), then they acquired Bubble Tape in 2003, and brought back Hubba Bubba in 2004. As recently as 2015 they have introduced new flavors (mostly based on soft drinks, which I recall seeing back in the days of yore).
Looks like the bubble gum industry is still there (or is there once again, after a hiatus). All kinds of it are available places like this.The Wikipedia entry even has a picture of gum available in Australia and New Zealand.
So there's that.