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Gourmet Foods 101
Did you know?
"Dark chocolate has the ability to lower blood pressure and alleviate headaches"

Chocolate Candy

Candy + Chocolate = Delicious

The first chocolate bar was invented by Fry & Sons, in 1847, and there has been no looking back ever since. Chocolate is America's favorite flavor;a recent survey stated that 52 percent of U.S. adults said they like chocolate the best. Not surprisingly, there are many types of chocolate candy on the market, the number one item being the chocolate bar.

The early chocolate candy bars were made with bittersweet chocolate because milk chocolate wasn't invented until 1875. The original candy bar industry started on the eastern seaboard of the U.S., in cities such as Philadelphia, Boston, and New York. The chocolate candy bar industry quickly spread to the Midwest, as shipping and raw materials such as sugar, corn syrup, and milk were easily available. Chicago became the hot spot of the chocolate candy bar industry and it's still an important base today.

However, attention to the chocolate candy bar grew when World War 1 started.

The U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps commissioned assorted American chocolate manufacturers to provide 20 to 40 pound blocks of chocolate to be shipped to quartermaster bases. The chocolate blocks were then chopped into smaller pieces and distributed to American soldiers in Europe. The army soon tired of chopping up the large blocks and asked the manufacturers to chop the blocks before shipping them. When the war ended and the soldiers arrived back to America, the country's chocolate candy bar business was assured to be successful, as the returning soldiers had grown fond of chocolate candy and now as civilians, they wanted more of the same. As a result of the war and from that time on, and through the 1920s, chocolate candy bar manufacturers became well established throughout the U.S. and as many as 40,000 different chocolate candy bars appeared on the scene.

Many well-known chocolate candy bars were introduced in the early to mid 1900s, including Hershey's Milk Chocolate Bar, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, Butterfinger, Snickers, 3 Musketeers, Kit Kat, Nestlé's Crunch, M&M's, Milk Nut Loaf, Fat Emmas, Big Dearos, Baby Ruth, Oh Henry, Mr. Goodbar and Milky Way.

Chocolate candy is so popular because chocolate mixes well and tastes great with many items including nuts, wafers, caramel, nougat, toffee, fruit, marshmallow, crèmes, liqueurs and mints. Today, chocolate candy is just as popular as ever, the U.S. Army's Meals Ready to Eat contain chocolate bars, chocolate candies and chocolate has been taken into space as part of the diet of U.S. astronauts. The largest chocolate bar ever manufactured weighed in at an incredible 5,026 lbs. It was exhibited by Elah-Dufour United Food Companies at Eurochocolate in Turin, Italy, during March 2000.

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