The following was published on the HUCALUM List by Dr. Allen Podet:
We've had a rush of Auf-Ruf's recently . In order to properly
deal with the sticky question of the CANDY TOSS, this recently
discovered section from TRACTATE AUFRUF was used as the authority:
(2:1) We distribute the candies when the person for shishi is called
to the Torah. Beis Shammai says: when achron is called up. (from the
Gemara: when do they distribute at shishi? Surely not when the
chosson is called up for shishi! Rather, this describes a case in
which the chosson is called for maftir)
(2:2) Originally they used to throw hard candies, but when they
caused harm to the gabboim, the rabbis enacted that they should only
throw Fruit Chews.(Rambam, in Hilchos Simchat v'Seudot, notes that
many have the custom not to throw red Fruit Chews during Elul "because
of the judgment.")
(2:3) Originally they would bring the candies in baskets of silver and
gold. But when Mrs. Schapiro complained that the wedding was costing
enough already, they brought [the candies] in [baskets of] wicker.
(2:4)We may not violate the Sabbath to bring the candies. But the
following do override [the Sabbath]: the passing, the throwing, the
recovery, the unwrapping and the eating. R' Kasha says: we may unwrap
only if we don't tear letters [on the wrappers]. R' Varnishkes says:
if we don't tear "Sunkist" and [the] OU [symbol].
(3:1) The children pass in the aisles and distribute the candies. How
do they distribute them? They go from row to row, giving a handful of
candies to the person seated on the aisle, saying "Take and throw,
take and throw." The handful of each child is according to his size.
(3:2) It is prohibited to eat the candies before throwing them. But
R' Kreppel permits it. (from the Gemara: But if he eats his candies,
he cannot throw them!) R' Kreppel was discussing a case in which he
was given more than one candy: such a person may eat as long as he keeps
one for the throwing. And what is the brachah for the Fruit Chews?
"Shehakol," the words of the Sages. "Borei p'ri ha-eitz," the words of
R' Ploni. "Are you kidding?," ask the sages. And R' Yankel says, "over
the beige ones, we do not make a brachah, because they are a curse."
But a baraisa says "over the beige ones, we do not make a brachah,
because they are not even food." Why do we worry if they are a curse if
they are not even food [in the first place]? R' Schmaltz says it is
because of the end of the baraisa: "R'Blinchiki says: we make borei
meenay besomim, because they smell." R'Yankel means to say that we do
not make even this brachah, because they smell like a curse.)
(3:3) If he wants throw candies he has brought with him in his tallis
bag, R' Kreppel permits [them to be thrown]. R' Varnishkes prohibits
it. The Sages praised those who added [candies] to the throwing. The
gabboim only praised if they [the candies] were not hard.
(3:4) When do they throw? After he finishes reading from the Torah.
These are the words of R' Kasha. But R' Varnishkes says after he
blesses. (from the Gemara: After which blessing [does R' Varnishkes say we
throw]? Surely not after the blessing of "asher bachar banu," for the
throwing would separate between the blessing and the reading [from
theTorah]. And if you would say after the blessing after the
Prophets, no one would be paying attention any longer and the chazzan
would be pelted when he begins "Yekum purkan" and woke everyone up.
Rather, R' Varnishkes says we throw after the chosson finishes the
berachah of "asher natan lanu.")
(3:5) How do they throw? Overhand, with the right hand, but if he
threw with the left hand, he has fulfilled his obligation. If he
threw underhand, it is as if he hasn't thrown. (there is a lengthy and
unresolved debate in the Gemara (15a - 76b) about whether a
left-handed person should throw with his left, or right, hand.)
(3:6) Originally, they would leave the candies where they were, but
when the janitors complained, they sent the children to pick up the
candies. There are those who say it is a segulah for [finding a good]
shidduch to collect many candies. But Mrs. Shapiro says it is a
segulah for going to the dentist.