CHOCOLATE_up or down today?

How much does it matter where...
the cocoa bean is today?

source: Hawaiian Vintage Chocolate

Not surprisingly, lately,
I have been thinking of
CHOCOLATE more than usual. 

Isn't any time of year a great time
for eating this guilty pleasure?

Can YOU refuse a smooth silky morsel of chocolate?

The colder winter months do seem to bring my urge for chocolate
to where some may interpret as unhealthy levels.
I disagree fervently ;0))

I truly believe that if you go about choosing what type of chocolate you savour... you'll live longer to keep enjoying this treasured treat.

Be it an 'organic type', 'fair trade' or regularly grown cocoa bean ...we ' Chocoholics ' need to make wiser and more informed choices.

Today, it is not enough just to enjoy the pleasure we get from this aromatic cocoa bean.
Some of us, have come to realize that in order to satisfy both our health and our social conscience...more has to be questioned.

As far as our health is concerned...here's a very interesting article I read on the:

During my crazy holiday baking marathon...
a news headliner "Hot cocoa prices means less chocolate in treats" caught my attention.
It pertained to the incredible spike in COCOA commodity prices.

This soaring price had hit a 30 year peak.  Imagine that.
I wasn't oblivious to the fact that chocolate prices were increasing...
however, I was trapped in a somewhat small denial...conveniently so.

Conclusion...chocolate was becoming quite the little luxury.

Our 'guilty pleasure' was within the appalling gamut of gasoline prices.
Isn't it strange, how we're up and arms about gas...
but barely a few murmurs about chocolate. 
Hmmm...I wonder why?

After having read that article...reality set in a little sterner. 
I did start becoming slightly concerned due to the choice of...
chocolate calibre I usually select to use in my recipes.

Thankfully, I stocked up on some quality chocolate.
So for my immediate needs...I'm still not thinking too much of alternatives. 
However, I can't go on ignoring it either.
The understanding I extracted from this article was that I was to somehow...
conclude and implement some changes in my chocolate buying habits.

That meant, I had to ease down on my chocolate treats at some of my favourite 'chocolatier' shops.
Within Montreal and its surrounding area...chocolate shops have mushroomed exponentially in the last few years.
However, only a handful really produce a higher quality...albeit pricey chocolates.

The news liner article also led to understanding that many of these quality dependant ‘Chocolatiers’ may at some point have no choice but to turn towards more sugary 'milk chocolate' confections as opposed to the darker healthier choices.

The milk chocolate, is not what bothers me...
especially if that's what I am choosing. 
What bothers me, is when I think I'm buying a dark chocolate...
but in reality, it's a camouflaged one. 
That's sneaky and not fair to the unsuspecting consumer.

To add insult to injury...
they may even start having to use cheaper alternative ingredients too. 
All this, so that, they in turn will not shock their consumers with the high sticker price.
Ghee, how questionable or should I say debatable is that?
All I can say is, when I feel cheated at a ‘Chocolatier’ due to extra sugar I was not expecting in their usually dependable tasty treat...I politely let them know of my disappointment.  
I'll let them know that if they don't go back to their roots of why they decided to become ‘Chocolatiers' in the first place...I'm afraid...that it would unfortunately be the last time they'll have my business.
If I want a regular sugary chocolate treat...I can go to my nearest convenient store...
pay cheaper and get the cheap sugar 'high' I was trying to avoid in the first place.
I suggest that these ‘Chocolatiers’ re-think their strategy.
A little less business from a discerning customer is better
than losing that chocolate lover to your competitor all together.

As a side note:
Just as I was finishing up on this article...
I got a notice about the possibility of the cocoa bean to go down today.
Therefore, just maybe for today...Chocolate will go down...a least a little...
and supposedly the short supply of SUGAR will get their prices spiked.
Who can keep up with these crazy markets.
Nonetheless, whether the COCOA BEAN is up or down today...
more than ever...the right selection of where to purchase chocolate will be key.
As for my personal delectables, I'll just have to make sure I appreciate every morsel.

source: innocentchocolate.com

Is anyone else with me on this one ...or, do you think I am being too harsh?
Where do you stand with chocolate?

Flavourful wishes,

Comments ...???... or suggestions ... write me :o)
Claudia at: foodessa [at] gmail [dot] com