Finding Pepsi’s new marshmallow-flavored concoction will likely be way harder than an Easter egg hunt. That is, if you consider a soda that tastes like an Easter basket staple is even something worth finding.

The soft drink giant recently teamed up with Bethlehem-based Just Born Quality Confections to release PEPSIxPEEPS, a limited-edition crossbreed between one of the nation’s most popular soda brands and a divisive holiday treat that gives candy corn a run for its money. While “don’t-knock-it-until-you-try-it” may be the go-to retort, the theory will be difficult to test — the drink isn’t available for purchase. (No soda tax applied, here.)

“After what has been a very difficult year, many consumers are looking for new things to smile about,” Todd Kaplan, vice president of marketing at Pepsi, said in last week’s announcement that blew up some newsfeeds, and even gained a mention on Saturday Night Live over the weekend.

To get ahold of the product, hopefuls will have to enter a sweepstake requiring them to take a photo with the marshmallow chicks and add a few hashtags. Entries will be accepted until Wednesday, with winners scoring a couple cans of the soda. Further details on the contest can be found online.

As an owner of Lore’s Chocolates in Center City, Tony Walter knows something about sweets, so naturally he’s heard of the Pepsi-Peeps collaboration.

“Certain things just shouldn’t be done,” he joked.

Though he admits he would be open to trying the unusual pairing, and applauded its sense of fun following a year when there wasn’t much of it. He’s a little more optimistic these days, as are other local candymakers, bakeries, and delis who are preparing for an Easter holiday much different than last year’s.

“I was so naive last year,” Walter said Sunday ahead of the store’s open house, held annually on Palm Sunday.

This time last year, businesses across the nation shuttered and scrambled to adjust to pandemic-friendly business practices that have stuck around, including online sales and curbside pickup. While vaccinations in the region are scaling up, and there’s a greater feeling of hope, Walter said retail business is still impacted by less foot traffic through Center City as tourism is down and many continue to work from home.

“We’re trying to make everybody’s holiday fun and as normal as possible,” he said. “That’s our goal.”

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Lore’s, along with other local candymakers including Mueller Chocolate Co. in Center City and Rockledge, as well as The Candy Jar by 1892 in Collingswood and Bordentown, N.J., sell their own Peeps-like marshmallow creations, such as chocolate-covered treats or lollipops. Around this time of year, they’re a popular sell.

“You have to have a Peep in an Easter basket, right?,” Walter said.

Cristen Listman, owner of Mueller Chocolate Co., said sales have been great so far this season.

“You have a lot of customers saying they missed out on last Easter, because I think everything was so turned upside down, that people are going above and beyond this Easter,” she said. “We’re off to a really good start. This week, we’re really looking forward to it.”

Business at The Candy Jar has been busy, too, said Paula Alban, the store’s owner.

For the first time, they’re offering a “smash” Easter egg, which comes with a tiny hammer to crack open a chocolate shell that reveals edible grass, a gummy fried egg, and jelly beans — “like a piñata,” she said.

It’s a seasonal alternative they came up with to replace the popular hot chocolate bombs that went viral on TikTok last year and left a line outside The Candy Jar over the winter.

“Last year, [the coronavirus] cut us very cold. We were kind of paralyzed, didn’t know what to do with all the Easter candy,” Alban said. “ ... COVID forced us to be more creative, it forced us to open our website, and we’re busy.”