Thursday, September 07, 2006

Things I Love About Switzerland: Chocolate

I never used to like chocolate.

I never understood why some people were so passionate and so completely obsessed with it.

To me, chocolate tasted brown.

When I moved to England, I noticed immediately that there was something distinctly different about the way chocolate tasted. It was pretty good chocolate; I used to consume something chocolate approximately every two weeks or so...

Since moving to Switzerland in May, I have consumed a piece of chocolate almost every day. No kidding. I'm surprised I don't weigh 500 lbs.

So I did a little research on Swiss chocolate and found that the first factory opened in 1819. The Swiss quest for perfection led to the first milk chocolate in 1875 and "melt-on-the-tongue" chocolate in 1879.

In 2005, approximately 86,899 tones of chocolate products (including imports but excluding cocoa and chocolate powder) was consumed in Switzerland (with an average per capita consumption of 11.6 kg - 25.6 lbs!). **It's worth mentioning that this figure also includes tourist purchases and those who drive over the border just to buy Swiss chocolate**

I found it no surprise that milk chocolate was the most popular (over 80%), followed by dark chocolate (15%) and white chocolate (5% - you people don't know what you're missing!).

... Oh Chase, unfortunately chocolate doesn't count as a solid... yet!

Special thanks to the following Web sites: and and image from

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