8 Facts You May Not Know About Chocolate
It’s decadent, delicious, a symbol of love and a gift for all ages — what’s not to love about chocolate? For most people, this delightful dessert has been prized since childhood. At the same time, there is a lot of interesting information about this food that many don’t know. Whether you like it in moderation or can’t get enough, here is a mini history lesson on some facts and features of chocolate you may not know.
- 70 percent of cocoa is sourced from West Africa. Most cocoa is raised by hand, on small farms. There is an estimated 1.5 million of these farms in West Africa, the part of the world that creates a majority of all the cocoa. The average size of these farms is only seven to 10 acres.
- Up to 50 million people depend on it. Across the planet, somewhere between 40 and 50 million people depend on cocoa for their livelihoods!
- It comes from a fruit tree. The substance we know as chocolate comes from a seed on a cacao fruit tree. It takes 400 individual cocoa beans to make one pound of chocolate; each tree produces around 2,500 beans.
- It’s the only edible substance with a melting point of 93 degrees Fahrenheit. If you’ve ever wondered why chocolate melts so easily in your mouth and hands, here’s the answer: Chocolate has a melting point just below human body temperature (98.6).
- It first became a bar in 1847. Fry & Sons, a British company, first combined cocoa butter, chocolate liquor and sugar into a solid bar in 1847. This is the first recorded chocolate bar in history. Today, it takes two to four days to create a single-serving chocolate bar.
- It has a holiday. Sure, chocolate is the star of Valentine’s Day, Halloween, Sweetest Day and more. However, July 7 each year is dedicated to chocolate — officially known as Chocolate Day.
- It offers lots of health benefits. While modern chocolate can sometimes get a bad rap for its sugar content, the truth is it’s also associated with many health benefits. Chocolate can widen blood vessels, reduce blood pressure, increase mental alertness and improve memory, according to studies.
- It may not raise cholesterol. Unlike other hard fats, one of the major saturated fats in chocolate has been shown to not raise cholesterol, which is a reason many people feel free to enjoy chocolate in moderation.
Since modern research shows that chocolate can be part of a balanced, heart-healthy diet, there’s no reason not to indulge from time to time. If you’re looking for some great chocolate gift baskets and delights, shop the Mrs Prindables catalog today!