Valentine’s Day is right around the corner – yep, I know, I’m in the same boat: it feels like Thanskgiving happened three days ago. Well, here we are, and whether you’re one who looks at this holiday season through rose-colored glasses or not, you can’t deny that V-day has one major thing going for it: Chocolate!
When we were dreaming up the Limited Edition treasures and treats that we wanted to create for Valentine’s Day, we continued to encounter one basic truth: we had to include Chocolate. This may or may not be because in here in our Creative office, we are mega Chocolate snack fiends, and 3 oz dark choco-bars disappear on the reg.
So, naturally, we set out on a quest to find Vermont’s most delicious chocolate, a search that led us up the road to Lake Champlain Chocolate’s offices in Burlington, Vermont. What we found was a bustling, busy, sweet-smelling chocolate factory chugging away producing fair trade and organic chocolates and shipping them out to over 1,700 stores in 49 states. They’re a manufacturing company after our own heart: their formulas are packed with the world’s finest ingredients, each bar is made with love and care in a glass-walled factory (so visitors can watch it all happen), and they love keeping their production right here in Vermont.
We clicked right away: skincare and chocolate, a match made in heaven! 300 full-size dark chocolate bars and 400 mini-squares later, we were partners on a mission to make your Valentine’s Day season a little bit better.
I had the pleasure of taking an extensive tour of their manufacturing facility, which was really cool. Big machines carefully attended to by quiet teams of focused people churned out truffle after truffle, and the air smelled amazing. Piles and piles of huge bags of Fair-Trade chocolate were stacked everywhere, and the whole place felt like a really fun kitchen where anything goes: as the employees dutifully poured and labeled and sliced chocolate, little bits (and sometimes giant spills) of it got everywhere, on lab coats and the floor. But no worries, cleanup can happen later – the focus stayed on the chocolate at hand.
One thing we love about Lake Champlain is that they’re a “Fair for Life” company – they were certified in 2013, with a commitment to prioritize Fair Trade chocolate; 95% of the chocolate they use is fair trade certified, which is excellent, because fair trade certification goes a long way to ensure that you’re supporting fair wages and ethical production methods for chocolate producers around the world.
Here are some fun facts about their factory:
- 1,300,000 pounds of delicious chocolate is produced every year (!!)
- 850,000 chocolate bars are made every year (including ours!)
- 200,000 visitors stop by the factory every year
- They use 35o tons of local Vermont ingredients every year (!!)
- …including 7,800 pounds of Vermont butter (from Vermont Creamery)
- … and 3,000 pounds of Vermont honey from French Hills Apiaries!
Here are some shots from my tour around their factory.
Author: Tata Harper Team
The team at Tata Harper Skincare is passionate about promoting a modern, health-conscious natural beauty lifestyle that’s committed to safety, honesty and sustainability.