How to spot superior chocolate
- Flavor - well-balanced, not bitter or too sweet
- Appearance - shiny and evenly colored
- Aroma - rich and flavorful, not burnt, musky or chemical in scent
- Snap - break firmly and cleanly, not crumble or splinter
- Texture/mouth feel - smooth and creamy, not waxy and gritty
- Aftertaste - should linger pleasantly
Health facts on chocolate
Source: Chocolate & Cocoa: A Review of Health and Nutrition
- New research is finding chocolate to be packed with high-quality anti oxidants that may reduce the risk of developing cancer and heart disease
- Cocoa and chocolate are rich in minerals that the body needs, including magnesium and iron
America's love affair with chocolate
Source: National Confectioners Association/Chocolate Manufacturers Association
- Chocolate is America's favorite flavor. A recent survey revealed that 52 percent of U.S. adults said they like chocolate best. The second favorite flavor was a tie (at 12 percent each) between berry flavors and vanilla.
- In 2000, the total chocolate consumption in the U.S. was 3.3 billion pounds
- The estimated retail sales of chocolate in 2000 were $13 billion
- Chocolate manufacturers currently use 40 percent of the world's almonds and 20 percent of the world's peanuts.
- Seventy-one percent of American chocolate eaters prefer milk chocolate.
How to properly store chocolate
If stored properly, most chocolate has a shelf life of more than one year. Cocoa butter, like any fat, can absorb odors or spoil. Therefore, chocolate should be well wrapped and stored away from pungent odors or flavors, which could affect its taste. Chocolate should be stored in a cool, dry, airy place at a recommended temperature of 65 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
Chocolate sometimes turns whitish-gray, when improperly stored. This is known as 'bloom' and occurs when the cocoa butter crystals, within the chocolate bar, melt and migrate to the surface of the chocolate. A piece of chocolate that has bloomed, is not spoiled, but its texture is impaired.
% Cacao and % Cocoa
With the growing popularity of premium and specialty chocolates in the U.S., consumers are seeing “% Cacao” or “% Cocoa” on many products and may have questions as to what this means.
In simplest terms, this percentage refers to the total content of ingredients derived from the cacao (or cocoa) bean. This includes chocolate liquor, cocoa butter, and cocoa powder. To minimize confusion for U.S. consumers, we encourage use of the term “% Cacao” rather than “% Cocoa”. For a more detailed discussion, including definitions, download the % Cacao and % Cocoa PDF
Source: American Cocoa Research Institute (ACRI), October 25, 2006
World's Finest® Chocolate
- Has been in business for over 60 years
- Is family owned and operated
- Has the manufacturing capacity to produce over 200,000 pounds of chocolate each day
- Has sold over 5 billion chocolate bars
- Has its own experimental cocoa farm on the island of St. Lucia
- Is one of nine companies in the U.S. that manufactures chocolate from the cacao bean