The Chocolate Life

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I had a bag of Sephra's milk chocolate (Sephra the chocolate fountain company) and decided I'd try it out on a couple recipes. I found it was extremely easy to work with and tempered really nicely.

I would LOVE to find out who Sephra has making their chocolate and then find out what else they offer. The Sephra bag I have claims they have a Belgian chocolate maker who makes their signature formula for them.

I thought it might be Callebaut, but after speaking with a technical advisor there who had never heard of Sephra, and then sampling Callebaut's own fountain chocolate, I'm pretty certain it is someone else. Any ideas would be so appreciated!

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Cargill, Callebaut, ADM, Belcolade. Only Cargill and Callebaut produce from the bean in Belgium. Belcolade buys liquor, and ADM uses its own liquor from other plants. OCG, now Cargill was started by a former Callebaut engineers. The three letters represent initials from their last names I am told.

With enough volume anyone can purchase a proprietary recipe from any one of these big companies, and voila, your own Belgian Chocolate is born.

I think however Belgian Chocolate, as a association or tag or description for your finished products is stale and now so diluted, it has lost it's identity. I believe strongly in the trend of artisans starting their own bean to bar production and standing proud of ones own chocolate creations. There is a real trend out there now and more and more small equipment suppliers are facilitating this bean to bar dream.

The Qzina Institute in Irvine Ca will begin working with bean to bar training and process development starting January 2012, where craftsmen will be able to come and discover the various processes and equipment used for artisanal bean to bar chocolate production.

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