New Zealand has enjoyed a long history with chocolate and is now entering the most innovative age in the development thanks to artisan bean-to-bar specialists and chocolatiers.
Apart from the larger players, many of the craft chocolate makers are small teams, often couples who have an absolute passion for producing the best possible chocolate products.
Big or small we congratulate and thank them for making us all just a little bit happier every day!
Richard Hudson arrived in Dunedin and opened a biscuit bakehouse. In 1884 he followed this with the first chocolate and cocoa manufacturing plant in New Zealand which eventually became Cadbury.
The Nestle brand was first registered in New Zealand with original brands Highlander, Milo, Maggi and Nescafe.
James Henry Whittaker started manufacturing chocolate in Christchurch in 1896, selling it directly to customers by horse and cart.
Ernest Adams set up bakery Adams Bruce in Christchurch and shortly followed up with expansion into chocolate with two Canadian confectioners. One of New Zealand’s oldest brands, Queen Anne Chocolates were born and continue to go from strength to strength today.
Nestle confectionery factory opened in Parnell, Auckland producing chocolate and confection.
Richard Hudson and Cadbury teamed up to produce the first Dairy Milk Chocolate, quickly followed by the now-legendary Jaffa in 1931.
Cadbury introduce two new brands, Pinky and Moro.
Devonport Chocolates start up their base on Auckland’s North Shore in 1991.
Bennetts launches in sunny Mangawhai – 1998.
Well known Kerikeri stop-off Makana Confections also opens in 1998.
These brave souls launched the beginnings of dedicated standalone stores and in some cases, cafes.
An explosion of local craft chocolatiers and chocolate makers begin to gain momentum in main centres and provincial towns.
Schoc Chocolate set up shop in Greytown
Hogarth Craft Chocolate is born out of Nelson
Honest Chocolat in Matakana, north of Auckland.
Ocho based out of Dunedin along with Baron Hasselhoff’s.
Bohemein Chocolates expand through Auckland and Wellington.
The Remarkable Chocolate Co. and Kako Chocolate launch out of Auckland.
Silky Oak Chocolates and Chocolatier Mirams launch out of Hawkes Bay. Silky Oaks with a venue and Chocolate Museum on-site.
Aucklanders celebrate the arrival of dessert restaurants Milse and Miann in the Britomart precinct.
The inaugural Chocolate and Coffee Show is produced at The Cloud on Auckland’s waterfront with over 5,000 attending.
NZ Chocolate Awards is launched with two Supreme Winners and 70 chocolates receiving accolades. Seven were Best in Class, 22 received Gold Medals, 28 were awarded Silver Medals, 19 received Bronze Medals and three Special Awards were made.
Hogarth Chocolate take their product to the world from Nelson and win numerous international awards and acclaim.
Several chocolate makers and entrepreneurs launch subscription-based chocolate delivery services based on the success of My Food Bag and similar products. These include My Chocolate Box from Kako Chocolate, My Chocolate Tour and The Chocolate Bar.
The year of collaborations with Lewis Road Creamery and Whittakers introducing flavoured milks, beer producers Good George, Boundary Road and others develop chocolate varieties and many more.
Cadbury relaunch a limited edition Caramilk bar, a brand from the early 90’s to a frenzied consumer response.
Launch of NZ Chocolate Week (1-7 October) to celebrate this thriving industry!
The Chocolate and Coffee Show is back at The Cloud, 6 and 7 October 2018.
If you have further information to add to our chocolate history in New Zealand, please get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org