Theobroma Cacao is the tree that produces cocoa beans, and it means “food of the gods.” Carolus Linnaeus, the father of plant taxonomy, named it. The history of chocolate can be traced to the ancient Mayans, and even earlier to the ancient Olmecs of southern Mexico. The Aztecs loved and valued the cacao bean so highly that they used it as currency during the height of their civilization.
The Fry and Sons shop concocted what they called “eating chocolate” in 1847 by combining cocoa butter, sugar, and chocolate liquor. This was a grainy, solid form of the treat. Another source claimed that the Cadbury Company made the very first chocolate bar way back in 1842. The company is still in existence and is perhaps most famous for its delightful Easter-themed treats.
Modern-day chocolate production comes at a cost. As many cocoa farmers struggle to make ends meet, some turn to low-wage or slave labor (sometimes acquired by child trafficking) to stay competitive. Hence comes the notion of fair-trade chocolate which focuses more on ethical practices in its production.