A Look Back At Chocolate

The flavor capabilities of the cacao tree were unlocked over 2000 years ago in tropical rainforests. Chocolate can be traced back to the ancient Maya and Aztecs of Mesoamerica. These two groups used chocolate as a luxury drink where they ground the cocoa seeds into a paste and mixed that paste with hot water.

Europeans also discovered chocolate early on. The Spanish while on quests to the Americas for spices discovered the flavor of chocolate that we all know and love. Once the Spanish conquered the Aztecs, they brought this treat back with them to Spain and within a century this product and its popularity spread throughout the rest of Europe.

With the industrial Revolution came the invention of numerous new technologies and machines. These new tools would forever change the industry of chocolate and the way in which it is made. Before the industrial age, chocolate, like many other products was extremely time consuming, expensive and labor intensive to make. These machines allowed for chocolate and chocolate products to be made at a fraction of the time and cost. This made chocolate more mainstream, allowing people all over the globe to experience, love and enjoy it. One of the impacts of the Industrial Revolution on chocolate that still impacts us today is the improved texture, and as a result, the taste of chocolate products making them the creamy and rich way we know them to be today.

Like many products in the early 20th century, advertising campaigns began about chocolate. Making chocolate products something that people knew about, something they desired and something that consumers across America would purchase.

Today, more than 2000 years later since the discovery of the chocolate flavor, the industry fundamentals remain the same, the steps to make chocolate are the same, however the experiments of blending flavors and techniques continue to lead to new breakthroughs, new flavor intensities and new products for consumers to experience and enjoy.