Last Thursday was International Chocolate Day. Of course chocolate has an international day.
Cocoa, from which chocolate is created, is said to have originated in the Amazon at least 4,000 years ago. There’s evidence of cacao beverages dating back to 1900 BC. In 1650, chocolate’s reputation as an aphrodisiac flourished in the French courts while erotic imagery inspired by chocolate prevailed in art and literature. In 1657, London chocolate houses became the trendy meeting places where the elite London society savoured chocolate drinks, not unlike current coffee houses or certain cigar shops. When doing supplemental research for this post I came across the an entire Pinterest board dedicated to infographics about chocolate.
Earlier this year Semisweet: Life in Chocolate premiered.
Semisweet: Life in Chocolate is about how chocolate changes the lives of people around the world and it’s how chocolate connects us. The film travels to four very different places on three continents to follow the unique journey of people whose lives have been intrinsically transformed by chocolate.
Watch the film’s director discuss it:
It seems routine to hear of conflicting evidence about whether or not chocolate is healthy. Chocolate is a good source of magnesium, copper, iron and zinc. It contains polyphenols, an antioxidant also found in tea and red wine. An average chocolate bar contains about the same amount of antioxidants as a 5-ounce glass of red wine. However, the typical chocolate bar is also full of sugar and fat. I’ve read nutrition and diet guidelines that recommend “one small square” of good quality dark chocolate per day. So, where do you find the good quality chocolate?
The Choco-locate solution
Choco-locate app for iPhone is a free app developed to continue the conversation initiated by the documentary and to help people make ethical choices when it comes to chocolate. Ultimately, it answers that question of “where?”, helping users find premium chocolate based on their preferences and location using GPS. The app includes a directory of local chocolate shops, each with a profile. Choco-locate is currently available in the following 16 world-wide locations:
Canada: Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Montreal, Ottawa, Hamilton, Stratford, the Niagara Region
U.S. Seattle, New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco.
International: South Africa, Paris, Amsterdam.
Search by chocolate type: Artisan, fair trade, organic, vegan or raw.
The top chocolates from each store are listed and users are invited to “like”, review or add comments. The app also features specials including in-store discounts. The Choco-locate app encourages people to try healthy and fair trade flavors or varieties of chocolate.
I think it’s a good idea and to help generate more app downloads, I’m doing a giveaway.
The Prize: A box of chocolate valued at $25 from a local chocolatier. Exact chocolatier to be determined based on winner’s location.
Contest opens at 12:01am on September 18 and closes at 12:01am on Saturday September
22 29. Winners will be selected by Rafflecopter, the tool used to collect entries above.
Update: Contest is open to Ontario residents only.
- A history of chococolate
- Animated infographic: 16 things you didn’t know about chocolate
- Choco-locate website
- Semisweet: Life in Chocolate at TV Ontario
Read more about the app:
- App delivers sweet fix for chocolate lovers (Financial Post)
- PODCAST: This Week in Location-Based Marketing — Choco-locate (Street Fight)
- PODCAST: This Week in Location-Based Marketing — Foursquare, Loc-Aid (Street Fight)