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In the News

  • February 01, 2019 10:00 AM | Anonymous

    By Bill Guyton, Executive Director

    I was reflecting on the increasing diversity, energy and growth of our industry upon my return from Elevate Chocolate Winter 2019 earlier this month.  (You can explore the just released and detailed Event Summary here.) This semi-annual event of members, exhibitors, nonprofit partners, government experts, and enthusiasts always offers a welcome opportunity for shared learnings, inspiration, and, of course, plenty of networking and chocolate sampling.  Looking towards 2019 and beyond, I also wanted to share some thoughts on three areas which are helping define FCIA.

    Industry Leadership
    FCIA also welcomed a newly elected board of directors in January to lead our association of nearly 360 members over the next two years.  The new board will oversee a five-year strategic plan which will position FCIA as a thought leader and innovator in fine chocolate. This will involve branching out beyond our semi-annual chocolate events, to include a broader focus on market research and communications, cocoa supply chain partnerships, and quality standards development.  The new board is also commissioned a “membership committee” to begin developing additional services and benefits tailored to the many different types of FCIA members. Stay tuned for more details on this in future newsletters.

    Inclusive Membership/Tailored Services
    FCIA welcomed
    eighteen new members in January 2019, representing all levels of membership from associate to corporate.  Our message to prospective members is resonating; regardless of your company's size, function or geographic location, FCIA welcomes companies who share our mission of “promoting quality, innovations, ethical sourcing, and best practices in the fine chocolate industry from tree to bar and bonbon.” 

    FCIA recognizes the diverse needs of different types of members, beyond networking. Chocolate makers and chocolatiers, for example, may have different priorities and educational needs.  Likewise, a retailer, equipment supplier, trader, or farmer cooperative will seek different types of services from FCIA. The “members only” section or our website is being restructured to help provide additional resources to our members. We will also be offering educational webinars, regional meet ups, and market data on the fine chocolate, which will be beneficial to you and your customers.     

    Creative Partnerships
    Our membership strategy looks inward to developing networks and services for our company members.  Equally important is FCIA’s outward view to develop new and lasting partnerships. These partnerships will help us achieve our vision of equitable-growth the fine chocolate market. These partnerships can take many different forms:

    • Market Research: FCIA partnered with the National Confectioners Association and Penn State University in December 2018 on an extensive, on-line survey to gain better insights on consumer perceptions of fine chocolate across the United States. The results of this survey will be shared with our members over the coming weeks and posted in the members only section of the website. FCIA is also exploring partnerships with other market research organizations.

    • Cocoa Supply Chain Programs:  FCIA has partnered with several important cocoa programs in Latin America and one in Cote d’Ivoire which are helping to improve cocoa quality at the farm-level and along the supply chain. Several FCIA members are already benefiting from these programs by establishing direct linkages with farmer cooperatives in Ecuador, Peru, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and El Salvador.

      Two of the newest fine cacao initiatives are regional programs in Latin America. The first is a USDA-funded, farmer-based program, called MOCCA while the other, supported by the Inter-American Development Bank/Fontagro, is called “Proyecto Plataforma multiagencia de cacao para América Latina y el Caribe Cacao 2030-2050.”

    • Heirloom Cacao Preservation: FCIA’s sister organization, the Heirloom Cacao Preservation (HCP) Fund, marked important milestones this past year, with the announcement of HCP’s sixteenth designation, based in the Philippines. In addition to identifying unique quality and flavor cacao, HCP also provides technical support after a site has been designated, to help farmers meet technical goals in scaling up.  FCIA provided an unsolicited grant of $8,500 to HCP in January. I serve as HCP Senior Advisor to help support coordination between FCIA and HCP.

    • Quality Standards:  FCIA is taking an active role in the development of cocoa quality standards through our participation in the advisory group on flavor standards, led by Bioversity International.  These standards will be important to raise the quality and grading of cocoa purchased by FCIA members.


  • January 24, 2019 4:52 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Guittard Chocolate Company Expands its Flavor Labs in Ghana, Ivory Coast, and Indonesia to Protect High-Quality Cocoa

    Burlingame, CA (January 24, 2019) — Guittard Chocolate Company, as part of its Cultivate Better™ sustainability platform, has expanded its flavor quality work in Ghana, Ivory Coast, and Indonesia. The expansion is an initiative designed to protect and preserve the unique flavors of each country’s cocoa. With the support of The World Cocoa Foundation, USAID, Swisscontact, and the Millennium Challenge Account, Guittard is leading comprehensive programs in the world’s top cocoa producing countries, working with breeders, extension agents, cooperatives, and farmers.

    To read the full article, follow this link.

  • December 27, 2018 6:43 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    An article posted by Candy Industry shows the U.S. chocolate market is expected exceed $20 billion by 2025, according to research by United Kingdom-based firm IndexBox. Read the full article here.

  • December 12, 2018 5:33 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Exotic Chocolate Tasting is hosting a Piemonte Land of Chocolate & Wine tour in northern Italy, October 18-28, 2019. Check out the attached flyer for all of the details.

    One page Chocolate and wine tour LINK.pdf

  • November 09, 2018 9:56 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Check out this article in Forbes featuring several chocolate makers and distributors of artisan chocolate in Utah.

  • October 29, 2018 4:48 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We are so proud to announce that Rózsavölgyi Csokoládé’s newest chocolate bar is made with our @sachagoldcacao cacao beans. Their bars are exquisite and beautiful. I met the chocolatier wife and husband team, Katalin Csiszar and Zsolt Szabad in their chocolate factory in Budapest last year. I spent time with them on our farm in the Amazon in Ecuador in the spring, and earlier this month in Quito. We are so pleased they have chosen our beans for their newest bar, and their distributor A Priori will have them in stores soon.


  • October 25, 2018 1:24 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)




    CHOCOLATE FUTURES

    An Evening with Emily Readett Bayley and Chantal Coady


    6th November 2018
    6.30pm till 8.00pm

     

    A revolutionary approach to Cocoa in Bali & Indonesia.
    For the last 30 years Emily has divided her time between the UK & Bali, in recent years becoming aware of the plight of small cocoa growers there: small fry, at the mercy of the Global commodity markets. 
    Chocolate Futures is about taking power away from big tobacco and commodity traders, creating a virtuous circular economy where value is added, the land and eco-systems are protected for future generations and small bean to bar makers can connect to the grass roots of their supply chain, using crowdfunding to build awareness and an bigger audience. The rewards will be tangible, healthy and delicious…

    Tickets can be purchased on Eventbrite 
    Members’ tickets: £10
    Non Members’ tickets: £15
    Dinner £40 per head


    Or alternatively email 
    rosannafrost@academyofchocolate.org.uk
    Buy Tickets Here
  • October 24, 2018 1:25 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Union Confectionery Machinery Company is pleased to announce their appointment as the exclusive auctioneer for the assets formerly of Harper Macaw Chocolate in Washington, DC. 

    All equipment was manufactured by JAF Inox in 2015 and includes bean cleaning, winnowing, roasting, nib grinding, refining, conching, tempering, depositing and a cooling tunnel. 

    To review inventory, view photos of each machine or to register to bid please use this link: https://lnkd.in/d9hYDeT

    Bidding is open now and ends on Tuesday, November 13th with lots closing at 10:00 am EST

    Please contact me with any questions,

     Jim Greenberg | Co-President       

        family owned since 1912         

    Union Confectionery Machinery 
    600 Mamaroneck Avenue #400
    Harrison, NY 10528
    347.226.5039 office               
    203.913.9656 mobile
    718.874.0176 fax

    www.unionmachinery.com

  • October 24, 2018 11:51 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Caputo's is thrilled to announce the 7th Annual Caputo's Chocolate Festival featuring Vietnam's Marou Chocolate, happening November 8, 2018 at 7 PM, Downtown Caputo's

     

    Details regarding the event are listed in the attached press release

    For tickets: https://caputos.com/class/chocolate-fest-2018/ 

    All media inquiries should be directed to yelena@caputos.com.

  • October 22, 2018 6:10 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Kim Westerman interviewed Gary Guittard, CEO of Guittard Chocolate Company, on the release of the new Eureka Works bar to celebrate their 150th anniversary. Read the full article.....

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