According to a CNN article, the rising cost of corn is driving thrifty farmers to turn to alternative sources of feed for their livestock. Food products such as chocolate bars, gummy worms, ice cream sprinkles, marshmallows, bits of hard candy, crumbled cookies, breakfast cereal, trail mix, dried cranberries, orange peelings and even powdered hot chocolate mix are being used as more economical alternative feeds. These are typically blended with more traditional forms of feed, like hay.
The sugar, providing the same kind of energy as the corn it is replacing, helps fatten the cows and increase milk production without any known ill effect to the cow or human consumers of its milk or meat.
Candy is not alone in its use as a substitute feed. A wide assortment of other byproducts, including cherry juice, fish meal, peanut butter, fruit fillings, tapioca and left-over grain from distilleries, also often find their way into the diet of livestock as a cost-saving measure.