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Elevate Chocolate Winter Event Registration Now Open

Beyond the Bar: New Frontiers for Chocolate

Fall is here and before you know it, Winter will arrive along with the next Elevate Chocolate Winter Event.
Mark your calendars for January 12, 2019 and plan to join us in San Francisco, CA at the Intercontinental Hotel for
FCIA's next winter event. We're planning an action-packed day filled with educational workshops, a membership meeting,
keynote address by Chi Bui, industry outlook and regulatory update by John Downs, the ever-popular Not So Silent Auction,
Gallery Showcase,  Partnership Showcase, and plenty of opportunities for networking.

For more details and to register, visit the Winter Event Registration page. Check out the Agenda here. Please check
back often for updates and more details as they become available.


Additional Ways to Participate and Make the Most of Attending the Winter Event

      • Have a new product or service? Or do you prefer to share and showcase your tried and true products and services? Please join us as a participant in the Gallery Showcase on Saturday evening by completing our online form.
      • Do you have an important program or topic related to the fine chocolate industry? Highlight it by exhibiting in the Partnership Showcase.
      • Make some noise and raise funds for educational programs, donate an item for the Not So Silent Auction using our online form.
      • Do you want to play a pivotal role in making things happen at the winter event? Consider volunteering! It's a great way to gain a new perspective and FCIA absolutely could not run our events without all of the generous help from our volunteers! Take a moment to complete the online volunteer form.


To learn more about other chocolate industry events, check out the
Affiliated Industry Associations & Events page.

"Through their events, the Fine Chocolate Industry Association offers its members and guests a unique and wonderful opportunity to learn more about the world of chocolate and its on-going evolution as well as sharing on a one-on-one basis its knowledge, achievements and experiences. This is a unique forum not to be missed!" Jacques De Waele, Savage Bros. Co.

Upcoming events

    • January 12, 2019
    • 8:30 AM - 7:30 PM (PST)
    • InterContinental San Francisco Hotel, 888 Howard St, San Francisco, CA 94103

    Join us - Saturday, January 12, 2019
    InterContinental San Francisco Hotel 
    888 Howard Street, San Francisco, CA 94103

    Registration is now open!


    We have arranged a limited number of reduced-rate rooms at the
    InterContinental San Francisco. They are available on a first come basis.
    Details for booking a room are included in your event registration confirmation email. 

    Beyond the Bar: New Frontiers for Chocolate

    Morning Session

    Registration Opens 8:30am
    FCIA Membership Assembly (members only) 9am - 9:50am
    Breakout Groups: Morning Workshops 10am - 12:50pm
    • Track 1: Value Chain Partnerships & Sourcing Quality Ingredients
      - Cacao Capacity Building in West Africa, Latin America & the Caribean (Kameron Burt, Irina Gonzalez, Robert Shubert, Marc Steen, Jorge Brenes)
      11:00-11:50am - A Sustainable Treat: The Future of Biodiversity-freindly Chocolate (Ruth Bennett, Justine Bowe)
      12:00-12:50pm - The New Generation of Cocoa Farmers: A Nicaragua Case Study (Jorge Brenes)
    • Track 2: Product Development, Innovations & Communications
      10:00-10:50am - Health Benefits of Chocolate: Facts, Caveats & Questions (Joshua Lambert)
      11:00-11:50am - Five Ways to Communicate Your Responsible Sourcing Message (Louise Kramer, Priscilla Martel)
      12:00-12:50pm - Use and Care of Chocolate Machinary (Dr. Balu M. Balasubramanian, Lorenzo Datei, Michael Peterman)

    • Track 3: Tastes & Quality Standard
      10:00-10:50am - New Sensory Standards for Finished Chocolate: Attribute Scoring & Evaluation Methods (Brian Cisneros, John Kehoe)
      11:00 - 11:50am - Fresh Chocolate with a Connection to the Palate (Megan Hile, Maya Schoop-Rutten)
      12:00-12:50pm - Creating Inclusive & Practical Systems for the Sensory Analysis of Cocoa (Emily Stone, Laura Sweitzer)

    Partnership Showcase 10am - 6pm
    No So Silent Auction 11am - 6pm
    Informal Lunch 1pm - 2pm

    Afternoon Session

    Breakout Groups - Meet the Makers and Huddles 2pm - 2:50pm
    • Meet the Baker: This session is a fireside chat with a few prominent pastry chefs from San Francisco, moderated by Todd Masonis, Dandelion Chocolate. It is geared toward chocolate makers to better understand how chefs use their products or those interested in using chocolate as an ingredient.
    • Chocolatier's Hardcore Business Session: Richard Tango-Lowy, Master Chocolatier and owner of Dancing Lion, will lead this discussion on the three critical keys to success as a small chocolatier. Based on performance excellence methods that have been used by some of the world's most effective businesses for decades, these tools will help you start, grow, and sustainably thrive as a small business in the fine chocolate industry.
    • Regulatory Update for Chocolatiers: Marlene Stauffer, Blommer Chocolate, will provide an update on various regulatory topics impacting  the fine chocolate industry including: chocolate standards of identity; FSMA; nutritional labeling; organics; nonGMs; and gluten free.

    Plenary Discussion 3pm - 5pm
    * President's Remarks Clark Guittard
    * Industry Outlook / Regulatory Update John Downs /NCA
    * Heirloom Cacao Preservation Update Dan Pearson / Ed Seguine
    * Keynote Address Chi Bui / K & M Extravirgin Chocolate
    Gallery Showcase /Chocolate Sampling Table 5pm - 7:30pm

                               FCIA Event Sponsors
    We are extremely grateful for the generous support from all of our Event Sponsors.

    Gold Event Sponsors


    Silver Event Sponsors



    Bronze Event Sponsors



                      FCIA Gallery Showcase Exhibitors

    Our (vendor) Gallery Showcase is a great way to check out new products and get advice relevant to you business. Visit companies like:

    Blommer Chocolate
    Chef Rubber 
    Dallas Chocolate Festival
    Deershop Chocolate
    Diamond Custom Machines
    Guittard Chocolate Company
    Kah Kow
    Rockgate Group
    TCF Sales

    Each offers a wide variety of chocolate/ingredients, tools/equipment, and deep knowledge.

    FCIA Media Sponsors



    FCIA Refund Policy

    All cancellation requests must be received at least 1 week before the event date, sent via e-mail to:  j.wicks@finechocolateindustry.org Unfortunately, no refunds will be made for requests received after that time.

    Refunds are subject to a $20 cancellation fee. Refunds will be issued in the same form payment was made. Please allow two weeks for processing.

Past events

October 21, 2018 FCIA Regional Meet-Up - New England
June 30, 2018 FCIA Elevate Chocolate - Summer 2018
June 03, 2018 FCIA Regional Meet-Up - Northern California
May 04, 2018 FCIA Regional Meet-Up - South/Central America
April 26, 2018 FCIA Regional Meet-Up - Northwest
March 29, 2018 FCIA Regional Meet-Up - Upper MidWest
March 16, 2018 FCIA Regional Meet-Up - SouthWest States
March 14, 2018 FCIA Regional Meet-Up - Southern States
January 20, 2018 FCIA Elevate Chocolate - Winter 2018
October 18, 2017 FCIA Texas Regional Meet-Up
June 24, 2017 FCIA Elevate Chocolate - Summer 2017
January 21, 2017 FCIA Elevate Chocolate - Winter 2017
September 12, 2016 ECOM Ecuadorian Cacao Experince
June 25, 2016 FCIA Elevate Chocolate - Summer 2016
January 16, 2016 FCIA Elevate Chocolate - Winter 2016
June 27, 2015 FCIA: Elevate Chocolate - Summer 2015(Members login to get your discounted registration)
January 10, 2015 FCIA Winter Event 2015 (Members login to get your discounted registration)
June 28, 2014 FCIA Summer Event 2014
January 18, 2014 FCIA Winter Event 2014 (Members login to get your discounted registration)
October 20, 2013 FCIA Networking Party: Chicago-Midwest Region
June 29, 2013 FCIA Summer Event
January 19, 2013 FCIA 2013 Winter Event
June 16, 2012 FCIA's 2012 Summer Event
January 14, 2012 FCIA's January 14th Event: Fine Cacao...Protect the Species & Share the Passion!
July 11, 2011 FCIA / USDA-ARS Tour Confirmation
July 09, 2011 FCIA - 2011 Summer Event - The Future of Fine Flavor Cacao
January 15, 2011 2011 Winter Event
June 26, 2010 Registration for the FCIA Summer Event on June 26th in New York City
January 16, 2010 Join us for the Fine Chocolate Industry Cocktail Party
January 16, 2010 January 16th Program: Mystery, Myths, and Facts of Chocolate Health Benefits
June 27, 2009 FCIA Members, Friends, & Industry Cocktail Reception
June 27, 2009 June 2009 Educational Session
June 27, 2009 June Members Only Networking Session & All Members Meeting- 2009

© 2018 Fine Chocolate Industry Association, all rights reserved.  Privacy Policy  Site Map

Executive Director: Bill Guyton / 1.206.577.9983 / Email Bill

Event Manager: Nicole Price / 1.312.953.4541 / Email Nicole

For membership inquiries: Jennifer Wicks / 1.406.370.8606 / Email Jennifer


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