The Chocolate Life

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Hi, my name is Hong Le from Los Angeles.  I've been working as a web programmer in the internet sector for half of my life.  I figure it's about time I try something new and why not get into something that I'm passionate about.  I love chocolate and I love business.  I hope to meet a lot of interesting people and mentors.

Jumping straight into my questions, here goes...

  1. I'd like to build a chocolate business but I have no idea where to even begin.  I have a mold in mind but have no idea how to produce this mold. According to my research so far, I think I'm looking to produce a polycarbonate mold. Can anyone assist with this?
  2. Are there any chocolate companies (not sure what they're called) that can help churn out chocolates in my custom mold on a mass scale? 
  3. I recently learned the term copacker.  Are there any chocolate copackers that anyone recommends?
  4. I have no idea about costs and minimums are when it comes to any of the processes so if anyone is knowledgeable in this, can you shine any light on this?

If I'm leaving anything out, please let me know also.  Any advice is greatly appreciated.  I hope to hear back from anyone and thanks for allowing me to be apart of this community.

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No one?

Hi Mr. Le,

I cannot say that I am a chocolatier like others on this forum, but my family  has been in the chocolate/confectionery business for over 65 years.  To have a custom mold made, you could probably contact Tomric at www.tomric.com.  If you hope to have someone else make your chocolate bars, I have no idea who you could call.  If you want to make your own, I can't think of anything you would need other than a tempering machine, the molds and the wrappers.  Don't know what a copacker is, and costs and minimums will depend on who you are buying from, best to contact those companies.  For boxes or wraps for your bars, you can contact ModPac.  Their stuff is very basic, and probably good to start with.  

Thank you for your response. Very much appreciated.

Take a look at the micelli molds. They are a sponsor of the chocolate life.
http://www.thechocolatelife.com/group/classifiedsforsaleorwanted/pa...
As far as copacking goes just use the search link on this site. :)
Larry

Thank you for your response. Very much appreciated.

Hi Hong,

I am on the other side of chocolate the consumer side and have tasted many dark chocolate bars a long the way

You may wish to check out the online Ecole School for a start. They also have the business side.

I t depends what you wish to go into bars or confections but it doesn't happen over night and you may also want to work for a chocolate maker or retail shop to see if this is what you really want to get into.

I work in a chocolate area of a super market here in NYC.

Awesome.  I will look into this online Ecole School.  I'm very interested on both sides of consumer and business.  Thank you for the response.

well, I'm from argentina, so I can't help you that much, but about the molds, polycarbonate molds needs an inyection die, that costs a lot of money to do, so if you are not going to make a lot of molds, really a lot, I don't think it would be cost efficient.
anyways you should do a 3d model of the chocolate, and then it will help for whatever case.
I recommend thermoforming.. which is a cheaper method and it's good too.

I'm sure you could find a confectioner or a chocolate factory that would do the job.. even the mold stuff.. 

Good luck!

I've never heard of thermoforming.  I will look into this.  Thank you.

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