The story of chocolate, as far back as we know it, begins with the discovery of America. Until 1492, the Old World knew nothing at all about the delicious and stimulating flavor that was to become the favorite of millions.

The Court of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella got its first look at the principal ingredient of chocolate when Columbus returned in triumph from America and laid before the Spanish throne a treasure trove of many strange and wonderful things. Click here

Growing the Cocoa Bean  |   Varieties of Cacao  |   Crop for Shipment  |   How to Make Cocoa Powder
Bean to Chocolate  |   What is Conching?  |   Automation Does the Job  |   A Sanitary Atmosphere
Eating Chocolates  |   Growing Chocolates  |   Chocolates just for kids

A Sanitary Atmosphere

A visit to a chocolate factory certainly will not reveal any secrets; however, the visitor will be impressed by the gleaming appearance that such a place has.

Chocolate manufacturers conduct all operations under sanitary, laboratory-like conditions in keeping with the purity of the products they make.

They follow a daily regimen of machine maintenance and general housekeeping that is not exceeded in the food industry.

Cleanliness is, indeed, the universal byword of the chocolate industry. Chocolate factories not only have careful programs for industrial sanitation and for the personal hygiene of their employees, but they are continually striving to improve their programs.

A Plant Within a Plant

Technicians use laboratories to analyze every phase of chocolate preparation-from raw materials to finished products. They test samples for the market as well as experimental products produced in a company's pilot plants.

These pilot plants consist of miniature equipment which duplicates a company's entire chocolate making process and those of some of their customers, as well as providing sample quantities of any product desired.

Chocolate manufacturers are making increasing use of pilot plants in conjunction with their laboratory research programs to develop interesting new products and find new ways of making the old ones.