According to one source, American William W. Kolb invented the red candy apple.
Kolb, a veteran Newark candy-maker, produced his first batch of candied apples in 1908. While experimenting in his candy shop with red cinnamon candy for the Christmas trade, he dipped some apples into the mixture and put them in the windows for display. He sold the whole first batch for 5 cents each and later sold thousands yearly. Soon candied apples were being sold along the Jersey Shore, at the circus and in candy shops across the country, according to the Newark News in 1948.
Candy apples are made by coating an apple with a layer of sugar heated to hard crack stage. The most common sugar coating is made from sugar (white or brown), corn syrup, water, cinnamon and red food coloring. Humid weather can prevent the sugar from hardening.
Brazil - candy apples, (named as in other Lusophone countries Portuguese: maçã-do-amor, as in the French pommes d'amour, meaning "apples of love") are common in the festivities in honour of John the Apostle.
China - a similar treat called Tanghulu is made by coating small fruits (traditionally hawthorns) with hard sugar syrup.
Canada - very popular and usually eaten at fairs or carnivals.
During the 1960s and 1970s, news reports about children supposedly receiving candy apples with pins and razor blades in them, created hysteria during Halloween in the United States. During the hysteria, hospitals offered free x-rays to detect foreign objects in the candy apples. To date the stories have never been substantiated and fall into the category of urban legend.