Inside a Chocolate Factory: How the Production Goes
As you all know by now, chocolates are basically made from cocoa beans which generally grow in tropical climates like Africa, South America and parts of Asia. In addition, to provide the raw products forming the finest chocolate paste, the beans should be harvested twice a year. This is how chocolate factories should choose their cocoa beans to follow the Swiss and Belgium methodology and offer high quality products. What should they do after purchasing the raw products?
Produce chocolate paste
After receiving the cocoa based raw products such as butter, mass and powder, chocolate factories must combine them with milk powder and sugar. This procedure happens inside specific machines with a capacity of 500kg to 2 tons that automatically mix these ingredients. 12 hours later, chocolate paste is formed.
In fact, the paste for the different types of chocolate is made in the same process. What differs is the percentage of each ingredient. For example, white chocolate contains the least cocoa mass, however, has more milk powder and sugar, making it the sweetest of all types. Dark chocolate has the strongest taste due to its high percentage of cocoa mass. It contains less sugar than the others, and has no milk powder. Finally, milk chocolate balances between all the ingredients.
After the chocolate paste is ready, it is put to rest for 24 hours.
Fill the chocolate and give it a mold
Before stuffing our chocolate, they first prepare the fillings. Some of them like hazelnuts, pistachio, and coconut gianduia are made by machines taking 6 to 10 hours. Others like caramel and chocolate or strawberry mousse, are cooked by hand. On the other hand, fillings like wafer, biscuits and smarties are bought from suppliers.
Once fillings are ready and the paste has rested, they mold and stuff the chocolate. These two processes happen simultaneously during 15 to 20 minutes at a temperature of 28°C. If the end product doesn’t have a particular form, like in the case of dip in chocolate, the molding is handmade. On the other hand, chocolates with particular shapes (round, square… ), are loaded with specific machines.
When all this is done, they wrap our chocolate with aluminum foil and store it at room temperature of 20°C maximum.
Add the chocolate decorations
Some edible decorations are placed after molding and others during the process. Explaining more about this, some factories adopted a new way of decoration. This approach consists of forming a shape (bear, car… ) with chocolate and adding edible ingredients (marzipan, smarties) to complete the design. The process is made during the molding if the ingredient should stick to the chocolate, like smarties. On the other hand, the edible decoration is placed after the molding for ingredients like marzipan.
At the end of the production process, they preserve the goods at room temperature of 17°C to 22°C in order to provide the finest chocolate. And then, as wholesale chocolate factory, they are ready to deliver the products to all shops and distributors.