Yum: Ruby Chocolate and the History of Chocolate Innovation

On Tuesday, September 5th, 2017, Swiss chocolate manufacturer Barry Callebaut announced in a press release that they had invented a brand-new type of chocolate. Called “ruby chocolate” after its natural rosy pink coloring, the candy is said to be wildly different from traditional milk, dark, or even white chocolate in both flavor and appearance. Despite having no fruit flavoring (which might be expected, considering its hue), Barry Callebaut has said that their new chocolate has a smooth, berry-like taste.

The inventors of the chocolate have described the product’s coming launch as an attempt to “satisfy a new consumer need found among millennials – hedonistic indulgence,” fulfilling that desire simply by being exciting and different.

The attractive color definitely doesn’t hurt the candy’s chances in this market, as young consumers have a history of embracing colorful foods. From rainbow bagels to black ice cream to Unicorn Frappuccinos, snacks that have a bold aesthetic are an in-demand commodity in the Instagram age.

Some have questioned whether or not it’s a good idea to mess with such a classic and beloved treat. The love of chocolate seems to be such a universal feeling that is has practically become cliché, and many consumers have a strong emotional investment in the sweet. From the Mayans to today’s trick-or-treaters, countless generations of enthusiasts from around the world have indulged and been delighted by the confection.

 

Chocolate has been around for centuries (early evidence of chocolate consumption has been dated as far back as 1900 B.C.), but the current trifecta of milk, dark, and white chocolate is a far more recent development than you might expect.

White chocolate was first launched by Nestle in Europe in the 1930s. It purportedly originated as a means of using up excess cocoa butter, as the product is made with a very high cocoa butter content. Today, cocoa butter must account for at least 20% of a white chocolate bar for it to legally qualify as such.

It wasn’t until 1948 that Nestle brought white chocolate to the U.S. on a mass scale, beginning with the almond-filled Alpine White chocolate bar. The bar was well-received and was available to consumers until the 1990s, when it was eventually discontinued.

Nestle was also involved in the creation of milk chocolate in the mid-1870s, as Henri Nestle, who invented powdered milk, helped inspire his friend and neighbor Daniel Peter to start adding milk to chocolate bars. Together they formulated the first successful milk chocolate recipe, which would go on to become a sensation.

Chocolate bars themselves had only been invented forty years prior to Nestle and Peter’s breakthrough, in 1847. Joseph Fry, in discovering a chocolate formulation that could be molded and would hold its shape, brought “eating chocolate” into the world, which had previously only known of chocolate as an ingredient in beverages.

All of this is to say that such a radical shake-up in the chocolate world is not as far-fetched as it may initially sound. We don’t yet know when ruby chocolate will be made commercially available, but it is entirely possible that it could change the game in ways we can’t yet imagine.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Designs We Love: Elegant Candy Packaging

In today’s edition of 5 Designs We Love, we will cover 5 of our favorite candy packaging designs. Each of these designs proves that sometimes, the packaging can be the sweetest thing.

1. Petit Geste

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Petit Plaisir is a type of Belgian chocolate sold in Barcelona and Madrid, which can’t be ignored. The pattern work for the Petit Geste line was created for the social initiative “5 Cellars, 5 Charity Projects”. It was designed by Barcelona design agency, Simple, using striking geometric shapes. The elaborate design is a work of art and provides yet another reason to buy a piece of chocolate.

2. Tingz

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Peppersmith Tingz is a line of Xylitol-based chewing gum and mints that actually helps prevent tooth decay, especially in children. The unique product needed one-of-a-kind packaging and branding to help it further stand out in the marketplace. Designed by London-based design agency, B&B Studio, the new packaging for Tingz has resonated with children and adults alike. The branding is teethy and fun, allowing parents to easily sell their children on the idea of good-for-you candy. The fun branding also expands to shop counter displays, where the candy packets are taken out of the monsters’ mouths. The two hairy monsters have been named Bowie and Floyd and their stories can be tracked through an online storybook narrative, booklets, and other marketing campaigns.

3. Lapp & Fao Chocolate Books

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Lapp & Fao created a series of chocolate books to better package their unique, adventurous flavors of chocolate. The packaging makes the set fun to eat and fun to gift. The line includes 15 different gourmet German chocolate bars, each wrapped in colorful card covers with intricate drawings and stories, making it more of a souvenir than a wrapper. The edges of the packaging are treated like a book spine, clearly displaying the brand’s logo in place of a book’s publisher. Each bar is designed to resemble a diary entry from Lapp and Fao’s travels around the world in search of the most delicious sweet delicacies. The effective packaging was designed by ONLYFORTHEFUTURE, with creative direction by Nils R. Zimmerman and illustrative detail by Andreas Klammt.

4. Coca Luxury Chocolates

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Coca Luxury Chocolates features 12 unique chocolates, each with their own small boxes. Designed by Denmark design studio, Bessermachen, each chocolate features its own coloring, personality, appearance, branding, and character like “The Rebel”, “The King”, and “The Magician”. The packaging makes the chocolates more fun to eat and each one is designed to reflect your character and personality.

5. Cacao Monkey

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The Cacao Monkey packaging features bright, colorful cutouts with the logo and type of chocolate spelled out in cutouts. The fictional brand of eco-conscious organic chocolate used the simplest graphic techniques, but created something unlike any other packaging designs. The bold packaging uses natural wrapping and minimal dyes to reduce its carbon footprint. The packaging was designed by Niamh Richardson, a visual communications student from the National College of Art and Design in Dublin.