This Just In ...

Clay Gordon
@clay
02/28/08 10:40:50AM
1,680 posts
This is a forum thread to post news items that really don't deserve their own blog post or forum thread. To add your own news item(s) - and you are encouraged to post articles about you - please add your reply to this entry rather than replying to a news item (which you can, of course, do if you have a comment to make on it).


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clay - http://www.thechocolatelife.com/clay/

updated by @clay: 04/14/15 02:55:29PM
Clay Gordon
@clay
02/28/08 10:43:30AM
1,680 posts
Robbers in Israel Steal Chocolate SpreadFeb 27 - Dateline: JerusalemIsraeli police are on the lookout for thieves with a super-sized chocolate craving. The robbers broke into a factory in the northern Israeli city of Haifa late Monday and walked away with nearly 100 tons of chocolate spread.


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clay - http://www.thechocolatelife.com/clay/
Clay Gordon
@clay
02/28/08 10:46:38AM
1,680 posts
Chocolate Beer Can Be A TreatFeb 28 - Dateline: Hartford, CTWhen the Boston Beer Co. introduced Chocolate Bock several years ago, it was well received but invoked primal grunts of disapproval from some aficionados and guzzlers of light lager alike. Chocolate beer may appear trendy, but the "trend" goes back 3,000 years.Chemical analysis of drinking vessels found in digs in what is now Honduras have revealed that man used cacao as early as 1,100 B.C. The early inhabitants of the Ulia Valley did not, however, produce the precursors of the Hershey bar or hot chocolate. Rather, they fermented a prize beer from cacao pulp.The frothy, bitter brew was often seasoned with chilies, spices and honey. Thus, the entire chocolate industry is likely an unintended off-shoot of early Mesoamericans' desire for an alcoholic beverage to accompany a feast, or a human sacrifice.


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clay - http://www.thechocolatelife.com/clay/
Clay Gordon
@clay
02/28/08 10:48:59AM
1,680 posts
Indian chocolate demand fuels domestic cocoa increasesFeb 25 - Dateline: IndiaIn response to rising demand in the chocolate industry and reduce dependency on imports, Indian cocoa producers have said they will increase domestic cocoa production by 60 per cent in the next four years.Chocolate consumption is gaining popularity in the country due to increasing prosperity coupled with a shift in food habits, pushing up the country's cocoa imports. Firms across the country have announced plans to step-up domestic production from 10,000 tonnes to 16,000 tonnes, according to Reuters. The country's annual cocoa demand is thought to be around 18,000 tonnes.


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clay - http://www.thechocolatelife.com/clay/
Clay Gordon
@clay
02/28/08 10:52:02AM
1,680 posts
Cocoa Climbs To Fresh Highs On Weather, US DollarFeb 28 - Dateline: NYCU.S. pit-traded cocoa futures continued their uptrend, vaulting to their highest point since January 1984 as ongoing unfavorable growing weather and a weaker U.S. dollar buttressed gains, analysts said. Most-active May futures settled $101 higher at $2,733 a metric ton and the nearby March contract settled up $95 at $2,717."The ongoing moisture shortfall being suffered by the West African cocoa belt could substantially reduce the April-September midcrop," said Dan Vaught, analyst at A.G. Edwards in St. Louis. A lack of rain and dry seasonal winds are straining crop development in African cocoa growing regions, meteorologists reported. Chances for a few isolated showers and thunderstorms in the area are possible, but there are no forecasts for significant precipitation, according to DTN Meteorlogix.All-time lows in the U.S. dollar against the euro also boosted cocoa prices, analysts said. "Barring a strong (U.S.) dollar, $2,800 looks like the next test" likely by the end of the week, Cordier said. Profit taking in cocoa could occur if the dollar and euro prices correct, he noted.


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clay - http://www.thechocolatelife.com/clay/
Clay Gordon
@clay
02/28/08 11:57:48AM
1,680 posts
French chocolate mousse murderer gets 20-year jail termFeb 26 - Dateline: ParisA 45-year-old French farmer was Tuesday sentenced to 20 years in prison for murdering his parents by lacing their chocolate mousse with a highly-toxic insecticide.Beaumont, who lived with his parents in the town of Chalmaison east of Paris, allegedly mixed bug repellent recommended for use on vines or beets in the mousse that was served at dinner. During questioning, he admitted to having murdered his parents, saying he wanted to get rid of his mother who was authoritative and disapproved of his girlfriend.Since the earliest days of the Spanish conquest of Central America, chocolate has been used to disguise the taste of poisons - which are often bitter.


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clay - http://www.thechocolatelife.com/clay/
Casey
@casey
02/29/08 12:40:28PM
54 posts

Barry Callebaut to open Chocolate Academy in Chicagoby Renee Enna, February 2, 2008, Chicago TribuneChicago's reign as "Candy Capital of the World" has taken some hits as confectioners have gone out of business or moved away over the years. But Chicago's sweet reputation will get a bit of a lift with the news, reported in Crain's Chicago Business' ChicagoRealEstateDaily, that the international chocolate company Barry Callebaut A.G. is opening a Chocolate Academy here.Crain's reports that the Swiss company plans to open the culinary school for professionals in June. It will be its first in North America (there are nine Chocolate Academies worldwide) and located in the firm's corporate headquarters at the Montgomery Ward building, 600 W. Chicago Ave.
Casey
@casey
02/29/08 12:48:46PM
54 posts

This box of chocolates is not quite the bombWoman robs bank branch in Olatheby Joyce Tsai, Feb. 12, 2008, KansasCity.comA woman holding flowers and a candy box that she claimed was a bomb robbed a bank and caused the evacuation of a SuperTarget in Olathe on Tuesday night.The robbery occurred at 6:35 p.m. at the Capitol Federal Savings Bank branch in the SuperTarget at 119th Street and Strang Line Road, FBI spokesman Jeff Lanza said. The woman walked into the store holding the flowers and a candy box, said Officer Vickie Smith of the Olathe Police Department.The box had protruding wires and she handed it to the teller, warning her not to put it down or it would explode.The woman demanded money and took cash from the tellers cash drawers and left the store in an unknown direction.Authorities were called, and they evacuated the store. An entire retail center, which includes other stores near the SuperTarget, was cordoned off by authorities for several hours until shortly before 10 p.m., Smith said. The bomb squad used its robot to pull the package outside of the store so it could be investigated.Authorities discovered that the package was an empty chocolate box with a voltage meter and wires sticking out of it, Lanza said.The suspect is described as a white female, 30 to 40 years old, 5 feet 5 inches to 5 feet 6 inches tall with chin-length to shoulder-length dark hair. She was wearing a tan or dark overcoat with a dark blouse, leather gloves and black fur hat, and was carrying a light-colored shoulder bag.There was no description of the vehicle the woman used.
Casey
@casey
02/29/08 12:58:34PM
54 posts

Eat abandoned chocolate at your own risk!'Enjoy your trip' takes on a new meaningAugust 17, 2006, The MercuryThe Hague - Police at Amsterdam's Schiphol airport on Thursday released a warning for hallucinogenic dark chocolate bars after a homeless man ate one and confused their uniforms with wedding dresses."He ate some and we found him hallucinating", mixing up police uniforms with wedding dresses, police spokesperson Rob Stenacker said."Several days later he brought us another bar that he had just found and we passed it on to the forensic institute" of the Netherlands, he said.Tests showed the 72 percent cocoa dark chocolate contained psilocine, a mind-altering substance found in hallucinogenic mushrooms and considered to be a hard drug.Police later found more chocolate bars on the ground and in airport dustbins."They were very likely bought in the Netherlands and abandoned at the airport by travellers who didn't dare to take them on board (the plane)," Stenacker said.Police warned the public to be careful if they found any abandoned dark chocolate: "Don't eat it, you don't know what's in it. Imagine what would happen if a child ate it."The sale of hallucinogenic mushrooms is tolerated in the Netherlands in so-called "smartshops" but it is forbidden to turn them into other food products.
Casey
@casey
02/29/08 01:24:08PM
54 posts

DeVries Chocolate #7 on Saveur magazine's annual top 100 listThe 2008 SAVEUR 100Our tenth annual 100 list offers a vivid snapshot of the widevery, very wideworld of food, zipping from the Ramadan markets of Kuala Lumpur to the kitchens of Montreal's vanguard chefs and a rustic Galician tavern that serves some of the finest octopus we've ever tasted. And yet, this year's 100 is also about celebrating the fresh and wild bountyedible weeds, anyone?found right in our own backyards. So, join us. The feast is about to begin. The Editors
Clay Gordon
@clay
03/10/08 09:13:00AM
1,680 posts
Top Ten Scientific Reasons why Chocolate is the Worlds Most Perfect FoodFeb 14 - Dateline: The InternetA humorous take on this important topic. 'nuff said.


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clay - http://www.thechocolatelife.com/clay/
Clay Gordon
@clay
03/12/08 12:31:54PM
1,680 posts
Gourmet demand revives Central America cocoa farmsMar 9 - Dateline: PanamaIndigenous people grew cocoa here more than 2,000 years ago. Now, their descendants are reviving the crop to meet world demand for high-quality chocolate. Throughout Central America, farmers are planting cocoa, taking advantage of high world cocoa prices and the premium their cocoa commands.In the 1990s [many farmers in Panama] abandoned the crop when the trees were hit by fungus and world prices were low. Now gourmet chocolate companies are turning to growers in Central America to supply cocoa that can be labeled organic and "fair trade," under which companies pledge to pay third-world farmers more for their crops.A cocoa expert at the Costa Rica-based tropical research center CATIE stimates Central America's cocoa output rose 40 percent over the last three years to between 4,000 and 5,000 tonnes in the 2006/2007 harvest. Planted area reached 21,000 hectares (52,000 acres), and another 2,000 hectares are expected to be planted this year."Cocoa is one of the few cash crop alternatives in poor, indigenous areas," the researcher said.


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clay - http://www.thechocolatelife.com/clay/
Clay Gordon
@clay
03/12/08 12:36:25PM
1,680 posts
The 20 best chocolate Easter eggs (in the UK)Dateline: LondonWhether you are scouring the aisles for sugary, shiny treats for your kids or browsing the local deli for an organic, 70 per cent cocoa indulgence for yourself there has never been more choice for chocolate lovers at Easter.In all price ranges and across all tastes it is now possible to buy good quality chocolate eggs with a high cocoa content. Even better, garish packaging is being replaced by the likes of hand-painted wooden eggs, and pleasingly kitsch boxes with more than a nod to Victoriana. Of course, the sugar highs of the trashier end of the Easter egg market traditionally beloved of the Brits are still readily available (and this list includes a few of the yummiest) but in the post-Green & Blacks era, it is just as easy to find the dark, organic, fairtrade and handmade kind. So, here are 20 of the best arranged in price order and now it's over to you for the hard bit - choosing.


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clay - http://www.thechocolatelife.com/clay/
Casey
@casey
03/28/08 08:56:20AM
54 posts

Terrorism act stamps out chocolate factory toursNationalROD MICKLEBURGHMarch 25, 2008VANCOUVER -- Except for crabby parents worried about their kids' dental bills, what could possibly come between children and chocolate?Step forward the U.S. Bioterrorism Act of 2002.Thanks to stringent food safety regulations imposed by the Act after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, "choc and awe" public visits to the famous factory operated by Rogers' Chocolates are no more.The Act applies to Rogers because the venerable company, by now a Canadian institution with its century-old store in downtown Victoria an official National Heritage Site, has a thriving mail-order business shipping individual orders of big fat chocolates to salivating customers in the United States.Print Edition - Section FrontSection S Front Enlarge ImageMore National Stories* Businesses applaud proposed immigration law* Ontario's Chief Coroner wants to restructure its operation* Powering down* Defence lawyer probes 'play hard' military culture* Ford called police night before arrest* As Emerson weighs options, Tories contemplate hefty loss* Go to the National sectionThe Globe and MailCompanies that export food to the United States are required to ensure there is no risk that anyone can tamper with their products, and who knows what a 10-year-old high on sugar might do."Our factory had school buses full of kids pulling up all the time. Sometimes seniors, too," Rogers' president Steve Parkhill said yesterday."They'd all been going through without the appropriate level of security. We found it just too onerous to take the measures we would have needed in order to comply with the regulations. So we stopped. It is sad, I grant you."The company's decision ended years of magical mystery tours that had entranced Vancouver Island kids with the up-close view of melting, dripping and pouring of chocolate, not to mention the sweet aroma and fresh samples at the end.Even though the tours were ended more than a year ago, e-mails asking for group tours of Rogers' factory keep coming in."They are very disappointed when we tell them 'no'. Most people seem to enjoy coming through a chocolate factory," said Mr. Parkhill, in a mild understatement.Late yesterday, however, an official with the U.S. Food and Drug administration said that Rogers' may have raised the security chocolate bar too high.Many of the food protection measures in the Bioterrorism Act are guidelines only. They are not strict regulations, spokesman Alan Bennett said."We issue guidelines and it's up to the companies to decide how to apply them. It's their decision, not ours," Mr. Bennett insisted. "I would encourage them to take another look."But the risky factory tours aren't the only fallout to hit Rogers' from bioterrorism fears south of the border.Just a few weeks ago, an FDA inspector halted a box of wrapped Rogers' chocolates at the U.S. border because the ingredients were not printed on the box.Mr. Parkhill said complying with that condition is tough for Rogers', since most U.S. orders are customized, with buyers asking for four chocolates of one sort, three of another, and so on."Tourists come into our Victoria store, have a 'wow' chocolate experience, then want to order some shipped home," he said."When you get an assortment like that, you can't list all the ingredients on the outside. So we suddenly got some grief at the border."This time, however, the suspicious chocolates lived happily ever after, as officials on both sides of the border eventually decided they posed no threat to security and were allowed to pass safely into the mouths of Americans.Rogers' is a company like no other. More than a hundred years after its founding by Charles "Candy" Rogers in 1885, chocolates continue to be individually wrapped by human beings, rather than machines. And the best-selling product remains the age-old Victoria cream.Local residents feel part of the Rogers' family. Obituaries often note that the deceased once worked for the company, and business developments are front-page news in the city.When Rogers' recently tried to launch renovations aimed at expanding its old-style heritage store on Government Street, an enormous outcry erupted. The plan is on hold.The chocolates are not cheap. They sell at upscale retail outlets across Canada, besides the half dozen or so individual stores Rogers' has in tony areas of Vancouver and Victoria."We make our large cream chocolate big enough to be cut into four, but no one seems to want to share them," Mr. Parkhill said. "Our chocolates have a time-tested flavour, from high-quality cocoa, and we have a consistent history of our brand meeting expectations."Except, perhaps, south of the border.
Casey
@casey
03/28/08 08:58:34AM
54 posts

Thieves Steal Truck With 20 Tons Of ChocolateAHN - All Headline NewsMarch 26, 2008Isabelle DuermeMichigan City, IN (AHN) - Authorities in Indiana reported that a semi-trailer loaded with more than 20 tons of Hershey's chocolate had suddenly disappeared.The vehicle disappeared 24 hours after driver Daryl Rey parked it at the Gas City truck stop, after picking up the haul near St. Louis. He discovered that the 53-foot trailer, and all the chocolate, were gone when he returned the next morning.A satellite device used to locate the truck had also been removed from the vehicle, and thrown into a pond, hinting that professionals had been involved in the theft."There's so many dishonest people in the world," commented Rey, 53. "It never used to be like this."Officials from the LaPorte County Police Chief of Detectives were on the case, and officer John Boyd was puzzled as to what the thieves were thinking of doing with all the chocolate, which amounted to 41,000 pounds."I don't have any idea," Boyd said, as quoted by the Post-Tribune.According to the UPI, police surmised that the thieves stole the vehicle not knowing what was actually loaded on it, as the trailer did not bear the name of the chocolate, but the name of the trucking company, Buske Lines.There was speculation of the thieves planning to sell the vehicle to be sold for scrap, or used for personal means.Patricia, Rey's wife, said that while her husband was not hurt, he was utterly depressed."He's really bummed out," she said.
Casey
@casey
03/28/08 09:07:26AM
54 posts

New Mexico Lottery Serves Up Chocolate-Themed GameNet Revenues Support Legislative Lottery ScholarshipsNew Mexico LotteryMarch 19, 2008ALBUQUERQUE The New Mexico Lotterys latest Scratcher game looks good enough to eat.The $10,000 Hersheys Milk Chocolate* Scratcher is inspired by the candy manufacturer that produced the first affordable milk chocolate candy bar more than a century ago. The games ticket is a replica of Hersheys well-recognized chocolate-brown and silver-foil candy wrapper. In the play area, 10 potential winning numbers are concealed under images of Hersheys milk chocolate candy bars. Available now, the $2 game features top prizes of $10,000.Until Milton Hershey perfected his milk chocolate recipe in 1900, chocolate was a luxury item. Hershey sold his chocolate bars for 5 cents apiece - a price that didnt change for 69 years. Today, Hershey sells 4.5 billion candy bars each year.$344 Million Raised for College EducationThe sale of lottery games benefits an in-state college tuition program. Since 1996, the lottery has raised more than $344 million for education and more than 48,000 students have attended college on Legislative Lottery Scholarships. Information about Legislative Lottery Scholarships and student eligibility is available at www.nmlottery.com.

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