Chocolate Is Sweet!

The word “chocolate” entered the English language from Spanish in about 1600.  How the word came into Spanish is less certain, and there are competing explanations. Perhaps the most cited explanation is that “chocolate” comes from Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs, from the word chocolātl, which, according to most sources, was derived from xocolātl (Nahuatl pronunciation: [ʃokolaːtɬ]), combining xococ, sour or bitter, and ātl, water or drink.

Since an early beginning look how much people love chocolate?

The chocolate industry is steadily growing.

It is a $50 billion-a-year worldwide business that is centered on the sale and consumption of chocolate.  It is prevalent throughout most of the world.  Europe accounts for 45% of the world’s chocolate revenue and the US $20 billion.  Big Chocolate is the grouping of major international chocolate companies in Europe and the U.S.  The U.S. companies, such as Mars and Hershey’s alone, generate $13 billion a year in chocolate sales and account for two-thirds of U.S. production.  Despite the expanding reach of the chocolate industry internationally, cocoa farmers and laborers in the Ivory Coast are unaware of the uses of the beans.  The high cost of chocolate in the Ivory Coast also means that it is inaccessible to the majority of the population, who are unaware of what it tastes like.

Chocolate manufacturers produce a range of products from chocolate bars to fudge.  Large manufacturers of chocolate products include Cadbury (the world’s largest confectionery manufacturer), Ferrero, Guylian, The Hershey Company, Lindt & Sprüngli, Mars, Incorporated, Milka, Neuhaus and Suchard.
Guylian is best known for its chocolate sea shells; Cadbury for its Dairy Milk and Creme Egg.  The Hershey Company, the largest chocolate manufacturer in North America, produces the Hershey Bar and Hershey’s Kisses.  Mars Incorporated, a large privately owned U.S. corporation, produces Mars Bar, Milky Way, M&M’s, Twix, and Snickers.  Lindt is known for its truffle balls and gold foil-wrapped Easter bunnies.

Mixing chocolate liquor with other ingredients like whole milk powder, sugar, vanilla and additional cocoa butter in varying amounts depending on the chocolate being made.

Food conglomerates

Nestlé SA and Kraft Foods both have chocolate brands.  Nestlé acquired Rowntree’s in 1988 and now markets chocolates under their own brand, including Smarties (a chocolate candy) and Kit Kat (a candy bar); Kraft Foods through its 1990 acquisition of Jacobs Suchard, now owns Milka and Suchard.  In February 2010, Kraft also acquired British-based Cadbury.  Fry’s, Trebor Basset and the fair trade brand Green & Black’s also belongs to the group.

Chocolate has been the center of several successful book and film adaptations.

In 1964, Roald Dahl published a children’s novel titled Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  The novel centers on a poor boy named Charlie Bucket who takes a tour through the greatest chocolate factory in the world, owned by Willy Wonka.  Two film adaptations of the novel were produced.  The first was Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, a 1971 film which later became a cult classic, and spawned the real world Willy Wonka Candy Company, which produces chocolate products to this day.

Wonka’s reasons for giving away his factory in the books are revealed to be because he has no living relatives and is getting too old to keep running it.

In the 1971 film adaptation, Wonka gives it to Charlie because he couldn’t trust it with an adult who would likely change and ruin the wonder of his life’s work so they could do it “their way”, not his.

Wonka tells Charlie he “can’t go on forever”, so he wanted to find an honest child to whom he could entrust his candy making secrets, and properly take care of his beloved factory working friends, the Oompa-Loompas, whom he rescued from a violently dangerous and terrible country called “Loompaland,” where he thought they would surely go extinct.

Thirty-four years later, a second film adaptation was produced, titled Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  The 2005 film was very well received by critics and was one of the highest-grossing films that year, earning over US $470,000,000 worldwide.

In the 2005 film adaption,

Wonka tells Charlie that one day while getting his hair cut, he found grey hair and realized he, having no family, needed to find an heir.  This is later revealed to be somewhat of a lie, as Charlie later discovers Willy has an estranged father with whom he has bad blood, which causes him great mental anguish and flashbacks that happen increasingly by the day.  He decides to help the disturbed Willy finally confront, and ultimately, reunite with his estranged father, Dr. Wilbur Wonka, DDS, whose overbearing attempts at protecting his son’s teeth, going so far as to throw in the fireplace any candies he brings home, drove Willy to run away.

He comes home to find the entire house is gone, seeming to have been perfectly removed from the complex it was a section of.  Charlie tracks down the dentist’s address, and upon this joyous, though at first awkward, reunion with his father, Willy immediately and happily allows Charlie’s family to move into the factory with the pair, going so far as to have their house placed in his famous chocolate room, having overcome his fear of parents.

He used to not even be able to say the word “parents” without slightly panicking, stuttering and gagging upon even attempting to utter the first syllable, causing the parents on the tour that day to have to say it for him, or to abandon the word completely, mid-sentence.

I thought that this would bring back some Sweet Chocolate memories for all you kids at heart!

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