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American, Bean-to-Bar Chocolate Makers: A Complete List

Hi All,

I have never seen a complete list of American, bean-to-bar chocolate makers. Since most American companies that market chocolate or chocolate products don't actually make it, I thought that it would be interesting to compile a list for everyone to see who really does make it, and who doesn't.

I'll type the first entry, and if everyone could copy it and add to it in each additional post, along with comments and questions, then that would be great.


Complete List:
Guittard

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Hi Clay;

Thanks for your comment! But I'm confused why it matters where we do our roasting? We are actively and directly involved in each and every step of the chocolate making process:

We buy our own cacao beans at source, partnering directly with farmers to guide cocoa bean fermentation and drying. Our TCHOSource program invests directly in infrastructure and training that helps farmers produce better quality beans. We take possession of those beans at the farm, and ship them to our roasting partner.

To be clear, we don't outsource roasting any more than we buy liquor. All of our roasts are directly supervised by our R & D team. Prior to the roasts, we do numerous, meticulous test roasts in our SF lab to arrive at the perfect roasting profiles for each lot and for each of our flavors. Then we fly to our roasting partner and supervise each roast and grind according to our detailed instructions. Yes we do not own the equipment (although, really, in other cases, the banks probably own the equipment), but the roasts would not be conducted, nor come out any differently, than if we owned the equipment.

One important benefit of roasting close to the growers is that we help the producing countries increase their share of the value-added (and capture more of the profit) in making chocolate, unlike many other bean-to-bar manufacturers who simply buy beans.

In our SF factory, we make chocolate from our cocoa mass—but we have participated directly in all of the work up to that point. In our factory, we perform all the refining, conching, tempering, molding, and packaging.

I think the most essential part of being a bean-to-bar manufacturer is sourcing our own cacao beans and being directly involved with the farmers who grow them—then directly participating in every step of the chocolate-making process. To me, this seems to matter much more than who owns the equipment we roast on.

We'd love to see you (and any other members) during the Fancy Food show! Thank you for hosting this discussion.
Nina:

There is some debate in the chocolate-making community about whether or not a company that roasts and grinds in rented facilities qualifies as a bean-to-bar chocolate maker and I have had these talks at length with Timothy (who I was first introduced to years before he started to TCHO), Jane, Louis (whom I've known since before they launched Wired), John (whom I met in Ecuador in 2003) and Rob.

In the past (if you'd read all the discussions on this topic) you'd have noticed that I personally believe that a company that personally supervises every step of every batch qualifies. But that's the commitment. Every Step of Every Batch. As far as I am concerned, if TCHO does this then they qualify. But I do not make chocolate and there are some who do make chocolate who do not share my opinion.

One of the challenges I have had with TCHO since the very beginning (and I wrote my first article, which at one time was included in your press materials) is that you have not done a good job of communicating what you've been doing any place other than tcho.com - and even there not so well at times. In the absence of concrete and good information, people have been drawing their own conclusions and running with them, to the detriment of TCHO.

I've been in contact with Rob about meeting while I am in SF. I hope I have the chance to meet you, as well.

:: Clay
Outsourcing (supervising whatever) roasting may be a business decision- but it will never be a decision based on quality. If you don't own a roaster and decide it makes more financial sense to outsource rather than roast your own -it's hard to be considered bean to bar. Where is all the care and attention to detail that tcho claims to have with the rest of there process line. If TCHO spent less on marketing they could easily roast there own- their factory has cameras and 3d!
I share your sintiments somewhat, I am very curious and is excited about who does whar myself.
A list of the ONLY...Tree to Bar.....is Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory....
the only 100% American Made Chocolate.... www.ohcf.us/
Globally they are not the only tree to bar. But the list would be very short indeed.
Julia - Michael is right, Original Hawaiian is not the only one though it is a very short list.

At the moment, Dole's Waialua estate beans are being made into Chocolate by Guittard, so that counts as 100% American, though not tree to bar.

There are at least two ChocolateLife members who live in Hawaii who are either actively doing commercial tree to bar or very close to going into commercial production. One of the companies is Garden Island Chocolate and the member is Koa Kahili. Check it out.

But I agree that Bob and Pam are the first to get something sustainable going commercially. They've been trying to grow cacao into a commercial crop in Hawaii since the 1850s and just now starting to be successful at it.

:: Clay
I believe that Santander by Compañia Nacional de Chocolates is tree to bar. All the ingredients are Colombian sourced and manufactured.
[Quote]Bob and Pam are the first to get something sustainable going commercially. They've been trying to grow cacao into a commercial crop in Hawaii since the 1850s...[/Quote]

Wow, Bob and Pam must be really old... if they've been doing this since the 1850s! ;>)
I'm adding my company, The Oakland Chocolate Company in Oakland, CA. I make chocolate from Jamaican beans exclusively. Very small batches. Bars and bonbons.

Here's my U.S. list:
Amano
Ambrosia
Askinosie
Bittersweet Cafe
Black Mountain Chocolate
Blommer
Chocolate Haven
Cioccolato
DeVries
De Zaan
Escazu Chocolates
Fearless Chocolates
Fresco
Garden Island Chocolate
Ghirardelli
Guittard
Jacques Torres
Kraft ??
Lillie Belle Farms
Lulu's Chocolate
Mars
Mast Brothers
Merkens
Nestle
Olive and Sinclair
Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory
Patric Chocolate
Peters
Rogue Chocolatier
Sacred Chocolate
Scharffen Berger
Seeds of Change
Taza
Theo
The Oakland Chocolate Company
Van Leer
Wilbur
World's Finest Chocolate
Nancy,

You should add your company information to the TCL Chocolate Makers database. That's a good place to store the information more permanently.
Adding my company Mindo Chocolate Makers: Micro-batch, bean to bar. We buy the beans right out of the pod and control the entire process including fermenting and drying all the way to molding the bars. We also make our own cocoa butter that we add to each chocolate batch. http://mindochocolate.com and http://facebook.com/mindochocolatemakers

Here's my U.S. list:
Amano
Ambrosia
Askinosie
Bittersweet Cafe
Black Mountain Chocolate
Blommer
Chocolate Haven
Cioccolato
DeVries
De Zaan
Escazu Chocolates
Fearless Chocolates
Fresco
Garden Island Chocolate
Ghirardelli
Guittard
Jacques Torres
Kraft ??
Lillie Belle Farms
Lulu's Chocolate
Mars
Mast Brothers
Mindo Chocolate Makers
Merkens
Nestle
Olive and Sinclair
Original Hawaiian Chocolate Factory
Patric Chocolate
Peters
Rogue Chocolatier
Sacred Chocolate
Scharffen Berger
Seeds of Change
Taza
Theo
The Oakland Chocolate Company
Van Leer
Wilbur
World's Finest Chocolate

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