We like it dark, light, braon, and mixed; we adore it liquid, solid, and crunchy; we love it in quantities, but sometimes, the smallest piece does the trick.
Similarly, these chocolate statistics you are about to read also contain many varieties. We will go through all the chocolate types, followed by the history of chocolate and how it came to be the delicious treat we eat these days. We will also unveil the mysteries of the chocolate industry.
The Top 10 Statistics and Facts about Chocolate
- Chocolate liquor is chocolate in its purest form and is what is added to other ingredients to make all the different chocolate types that you get today.
- White chocolate must contain a minimum of 20% cocoa butter, 14% milk, and a maximum of 55% sugar.
- Milk chocolate should contain a minimum of 10% chocolate liquor and 12% milk.
- Cocoa powder in its unsweetened form is essentially 100% cocoa.
- A single pound of chocolate is created by using around 400 cocoa beans, according to chocolate statistics from 2019 and onwards.
- World Chocolate Day is celebrated on July 7.
- The retail sales of chocolate throughout the world amounted to $98.2 billion in 2016.
- Americans consume 58 million pounds of chocolate in the week leading to Valentine’s Day.
- Cocoa farmers earn less than $1 daily.
- Flavonols in dark chocolate can protect your skin from sun damage.
Types of Chocolate and the Most Interesting Chocolate Facts
Chocolate is well known for its sweet, irresistible taste, which quickly made it one of the world’s favorite sweets.
Cocoa beans, 3 million tons of which are consumed per year worldwide, are mixed with different ingredients to create a variety of different (equally) delicious types of chocolate.
Let’s check them out and discover the most compelling facts about chocolate!
1. Chocolate liquor is chocolate in its purest form and is what is added to other ingredients to make all the different chocolate types.
Chocolate liquor is made from cocoa beans, which have been through a process of fermenting, drying, and eventually roasting, which is where the flavor is created. From there, the nibs from the interior of the beans are taken out and ground up before being liquified to make the chocolate liquor.
2. Any chocolate with 35% or more of cocoa solids is considered dark chocolate, say dark chocolate nutrition facts.
This chocolate has less sugar than other types and is named after the fact that it is darker than other variations of chocolate.
3. Milk chocolate is made by including milk, and commonly milk powder, to the original recipe for chocolate.
Originally, milk chocolate was only available in liquid form. However, over time, chocolatiers were able to find a way to create a hardened form that is not available on the shelves of every grocery store.
4. White chocolate isn’t technically chocolate, as no cocoa solids are in the ingredients.
One of the many fun facts about chocolate: White chocolate is actually a derivative of chocolate and is very sweet and creamy. It is made up of cocoa butter, milk, and sugar.
5. The most expensive chocolate in the world is Chocopologie Chocolate Truffle.
It is created by Fritz Knipschildt and costs a whopping $2,600. They aren’t exactly the kind of chocolate you can purchase from a grocery store; they are made to order and must be eaten within seven days of purchase.
6. The second most expensive of the chocolate brands in the world is Cadbury, with a creation called Wispa Gold Chocolate, which will cost you $1,600.
The delicious chocolate is wrapped in an actual edible gold leaf, which is why it’s so expensive.
7. Also using gold in their product, the third most expensive chocolate in the world is made by DeLafee.
These chocolates are made using cocoa beans from Ecuador, and edible gold flakes are added as a decoration. These will set you back $508.
8. One of the many interesting chocolate nutrition facts is that there are three types of cocoa pods — Criollo, Forastero, and Trinitario.
Criollo has a nutty, unique, and mild flavor and is also the more valuable of the pods. Forastero is a richer, heartier pod that is higher in fat. And Trinitario is a hybrid of the other two types of pods.
9. A single pound of chocolate is created by using around 400 cocoa beans.
Making chocolate is a long, convoluted process, although it has been changed, streamlined, and simplified over the years.
10. White chocolate must contain a minimum of 20% cocoa butter, 14% milk, and a maximum of 55% sugar.
(Lake Champlain Chocolates)
According to the US FDA, products resembling white chocolate with different nutrition values aren’t officially considered to be white chocolate.
11. Milk chocolate should contain at least 10% chocolate liquor and 12% milk solids.
(U.S. Food and Drugs Administration)
Unlike white chocolate that doesn’t contain any chocolate liquor, milk chocolate must include it in order to get the characteristic “chocolate” flavor and pass the US FDA criteria for milk chocolate.
12. Milk chocolate is the most popular type of chocolate.
(Lake Champlain Chocolates) (Statista)
Chocolate consumer statistics show that milk chocolate was by far the most preferred type of chocolate in the US among all age groups in 2010.
About 88% of teens, 85% adults, and 71% seniors chose milk chocolate over dark chocolate.
13. Dark chocolate must contain a minimum of 15% chocolate liquor.
(Lake Champlain Chocolates)
According to dark chocolate statistics, most dark chocolate brands include at least 50% of chocolate liquor.
Here are some more exciting dark chocolate facts. Dark chocolate contains only two ingredients—chocolate liquor and sugar.
14. Unsweetened cocoa powder is 100% cocoa.
(Lake Champlain Chocolate)
Cocoa powder is a product of chocolate liquor separation. After all cocoa butter has been extracted, the remaining solids are crushed into powder.
15. ‘Ruby’ is the newest natural chocolate color.
Barry Callebaut, a Belgian-Swiss company, introduced ruby chocolate in 2017—over 80 years after Nestlé launched white chocolate.
Its natural vibrant pink color comes from a newly discovered type of cocoa bean—ruby cocoa bean cultivated in Ecuador, Brazil, and the Ivory Coast.
Chocolate History Facts
The use of cocoa and chocolate can be traced as far back as the Mesoamerica era. Historically, they were so important they were referred to as the gods’ food.
Let’s find out more interesting facts about chocolate history, how it developed and evolved through the centuries.
16. Originally, for many years, chocolate was a beverage and not the hardened candy we eat today.
For 90% of the history of this now household treat, there was no sugar added, chocolate consumption statistics show that it was something to drink rather than to eat.
17. The term “chocolate” comes from the Aztec term “xocoatl.”
This was originally the name for the bitter drink created using cacao beans.
18. Joseph Fry is the person you can thank for inventing the first version of the modern chocolate bar.
He made this discovery in 1947, and, in 1868, Cadbury (now one of the top chocolate companies) was selling chocolate candy boxes around England.
19. The first mass-produced candy bar in the world was Fry’s Chocolate Cream from 1866.
This delicious treat had fondant at the center and was surrounded by chocolate. It was produced and sold in England.
20. The first candy bar to be made in the United States was Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Bar.
It was created in 1900 and, while there were already chocolate bars available from Europe, it was the first truly American chocolate. This chocolate product is still available today.
21. Cocoa was introduced to Europe from Spain.
Not everyone agrees how chocolate arrived in Spain. Some believe Christopher Columbus brought cacao beans to Spain after discovering them on a trade ship they intercepted on a journey to America.
Others believe Aztecs introduced Hernán Cortès to chocolate on Montezuma’s court. The third story suggests that Philip II of Spain received cacao beans as a precious gift from friars who presented Guatemalan Mayans in 1544.
Whichever of the stories is true, the introduction of cacao paved the way for creating various chocolate brands we enjoy today.
22. Cocoa beans were once used as a currency.
Mayans used cocoa beans for trading for a long time.
In the ancient Aztec market, a single cocoa bean could get you one large tomato, while 30 or 300 beans could be traded for a small rabbit or a male turkey, respectively.
Just like today’s money, cocoa bean currency was prone to counterfeiting. Dishonest people would make cocoa bean copies from amaranth dough or wax.
23. Ancient Mayans believed cacao existed before humans.
According to ancient Maya lore, humans were created from corn and were offered precious cacao as food, which gods found at Sustenance Mountain.
24. Milk chocolate dates back to 1876.
(The Chocolate Society)
A Swiss chocolatier, Daniel Peter, working with one of today’s most well-known chocolate brands, Nestlè, is likely the first to develop the commercial milk chocolate recipe.
Here are some more interesting facts about milk chocolate. Milk was first added to drinking chocolate for purely medicinal purposes in 1672. Commercial drinking chocolate with milk, a predecessor of milk chocolate, became available in 1820.
The birth of modern milk chocolate occurred in 1879 when Rudolf Lindt came up with a technology for creating smoother-textured chocolate.
25. Chocolate was sometimes used as payment for soldiers.
During the Revolutionary War (1775–1783), soldiers sometimes received chocolate instead of money for their service. Moreover, chocolate was also provided as rations.
26. World Chocolate Day is celebrated on July 7.
(National Today) (Irish Mirror)
The US also celebrates National Chocolate Day on October 28.
27. White chocolate was discovered by accident.
Interestingly, white chocolate was made (according to chocolate facts) for kids. In the 1930s, a group of Swiss doctors was trying to find a way to give vitamin-enriched milk to hospitalized children. They refused to drink milk in liquid form, as they found it too babyish.
Adding cocoa butter to milk to make milk more attractive resulted in the accidental invention of milk chocolate.
Chocolate consumption statistics for that period show that white chocolate was an instant success, not only among the hospitalized children but also in the general population.
28. German chocolate cake wasn’t invented in Germany.
(What’s Cooking America)
Contrary to common belief, the German chocolate cake doesn’t originate from Germany.
Surprisingly, it was named after an English-American baker Sam German who came up with a recipe for dark baking chocolate to be used in cakes.
Facts and Stats on the Chocolate Industry
Over the years, the chocolate industry has experienced tremendous growth, and there’s no sign of it slowing down.
Take a bite of chocolate and enjoy these amazing facts and stats about the chocolate industry.
29. The United States produces the most chocolate out of all the countries in the world according to chocolate industry statistics.
The United States produces around 30% of the world’s chocolate, while the whole of the European continent produces 35%. This means that one country produces almost as much chocolate as an entire continent.
30. Hershey’s produces the most chocolate in the United States.
This is a huge feat given the number of competing chocolate businesses and brands there are in the country. This is according to the chocolate industry market share in the United States.
31. The retail sales of chocolate throughout the world amounted to $98.2 billion in 2016.
Just in Western Europe, the retail sales amounted to $34.44 billion, and in Brazil, that number was $5.5 billion.
32. The Swiss consume the most chocolate per capita out of all the countries in the world.
Switzerland first started creating chocolate in the 17th century (although it was quite different from the chocolate we experience today), and the delicious food is still loved throughout the European country. This is all interesting data gathered from Swiss chocolate statistics.
33. It is predicted that the worldwide chocolate market will amount to $139.94 billion by 2024.
During the period between 2019 and 2024, the global chocolate market is believed to grow at a CAGR of 4.5%.
34. By the time we reach the year 2026, it is believed that the chocolate confectionery global market will be worth $187.05 billion.
The chocolate confectionery industry continues to grow throughout the world.
35. Mars, Incorporated is the top confectionery manufacturer in the world.
It is one of the many American chocolate companies, and it’s responsible for many different kinds of chocolate treats, including Mars Bars, Galaxy, M&Ms, and Snickers.
36. From 2015 to 2016, cocoa was produced to the amount of around 3.19 million tons.
This was the total amount of cocoa produced throughout the world in that crop year.
37. The global market share of dollar sales for premium chocolate was 18% in 2016.
This just goes to show how popular premium chocolate is throughout the world. This chocolate market share grew in 2018 and onward.
38. 30% of people buying chocolate do so through online purchases.
Just as with many products in the modern world, chocolate is being sold online in great quantities.
39. In 2016, it was projected that around $22 billion would be made from sales of chocolate in the United States.
According to this number, it would appear that chocolate is a good business to be in when it comes to continuous sales.
40. Brussels Airport is the largest chocolate-selling outlet in the world.
Statistics show that it sells about 53 oz of chocolate every minute, amounting to a whopping 800 tons a year. Many praised Belgian chocolate brands such as Godiva, Neuhaus, Leonidas, etc., are readily available to travelers.
41. The Baker Chocolate Company is one of the oldest US chocolate companies.
(BU News Service)
It was established in the late 18th century (1870), and it’s been providing many with delicious, high-quality chocolate treats until 1995.
42. Switzerland, Germany, and Ireland are the top three consumers of chocolate.
According to chocolate consumption statistics from 2018, the Swiss sit comfortably at the top, consuming 19.4 lbs of chocolate per capita annually. They’re closely followed by the Germans and the Irish, with 17.8 lbs and 17.4 lbs of chocolate per capita per year.
43. Americans consume about 58 million lbs of chocolate in the week leading to Valentine’s Day.
(The Daily Meal) (CNBC)
Chocolate and various confectionery products remain the most popular Valentine’s Day present.
According to chocolate statistics for 2021, a staggering 86% of Americans intended to bring a smile to their significant other’s face by giving them chocolate on Valentine’s Day.
44. Cocoa farmers earn less than $1 daily.
Taking booming chocolate sales into consideration, one would expect that cocoa farmers take home some good cash.
However, chocolate production statistics show that cocoa farmers are severely underpaid, despite working under harsh conditions and substantial physical burden.
In reality, they only make about $0.5–$0.84 daily, which is way below the extreme poverty line.
45. The high demand for cocoa led to massive deforestation in the Ivory Coast.
According to chocolate industry statistics, the Ivory Coast produces over a third of the world’s cocoa. Cocoa crops require full-sun farming, meaning all surrounding trees need to be removed.
Due to the increase in demand (and the fact that over 40% of cocoa crops are illegal, destroying protected forests of national parks), the Ivory Coast lost over 80% of its forests in the last 50 years.
46. The US was the greatest chocolate consumer in 2020.
According to statistics related to chocolate consumption by country in 2020, the US alone accounted for 18% of the total global chocolate consumption. Russia and the UK followed closely with 11% and 9%, respectively.
47. According to chocolate sales statistics for 2020, online chocolate sales amounted to $1.4 billion.
Compared with the previous year when online chocolate sales reached $817 billion, this was a significant increase.
48. According to dark chocolate consumption statistics, dark chocolate is gradually gaining more popularity in the US.
The increased awareness of its health benefits and the ability to positively affect mood, immunity, memory, and stress were the essential factors contributing to the increased demand.
Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate
We often hear how sweets are bad for our health. They lead to weight gain, negatively affect our skin and teeth, etc.
However, dark chocolate is a dessert that doesn’t arouse that much worry. On the contrary, it provides plenty of health benefits.
Let’s go through the most intriguing dark chocolate statistics and facts relating to health.
49. Dark chocolate is a potent antioxidant.
According to dark chocolate facts, dark chocolate is a more potent antioxidant than most foods, including fruit. Flavanols, polyphenols, and catechins are only some of the organic compounds with antioxidant properties in this popular, healthy sweet treat.
It has a higher ORAC value (oxygen radical absorbance capacity), meaning it’s more effective in eliminating damaging free radicals.
According to USDA’s findings, 3.5 oz of dark chocolate has an ORAC value of 40,200, much higher than cranberries (9,584), blueberries (6,552), and raspberries, well-known fruit antioxidants.
50. Dark chocolate can help lower blood pressure.
This is another of the interesting dark chocolate facts. Dark chocolate contains flavonoids that can encourage endothelium (the blood vessel lining) to produce nitric oxide and make it more bioavailable.
Nitric oxide is a vasodilator, meaning it decreases peripheral resistance in blood vessels, relaxes them, and subsequently reduces blood pressure.
51. Flavonols in dark chocolate can protect your skin from sun damage.
A study examining 30 respondents revealed that consuming dark chocolate for 12 weeks can more than double your MED (minimal amount of UVB rays for causing skin redness and damage after 24 h).
Additionally, flavanols from dark chocolate may improve blood circulation to the skin and increase skin hydration and density.
52. Dark chocolate increases cognitive function.
(Healthline) (Washington Times)
Studies show that bioactive substances such as caffeine and theobromine in dark chocolate can increase blood flow to the brain and improve various brain functions, such as memory, reasoning, recall, and mindfulness.
Additionally, dark chocolate may be beneficial for seniors with milder cognitive impairments, as it can also improve speech and reduce the risk of other diseases.
53. Dark chocolate can reduce the risk of heart disease.
It does so by reducing LDL and increasing HDL levels. Furthermore, studies show that dark chocolate protects against LDL oxidation in seniors, preventing damage to the artery lining in the heart.
What’s more, the benefits of dark chocolate statistics show that dark chocolate can reduce the risk of dying from heart disease by a whopping 50%.
54. Eating dark chocolate once a week can reduce the risk of diabetes.
(Abbott) (Everyday Health)
Furthermore, dark chocolate (at least 70%) is an excellent dessert for diabetic patients. Antioxidants found in dark chocolate help lower blood sugar levels by helping the body use insulin more effectively.
How many types of chocolate are there?
There are three general chocolate types. The first is dark chocolate, which contains around 35% or more of cocoa solids. This form of chocolate is less sweet than the others and has more of a bitter taste because it contains less sugar.
Milk chocolate is made using milk and, commonly, milk solids. It is creamier than dark chocolate because of the milk and is a little sweeter as it contains fewer cocoa solids. Most of the chocolate bar brands use milk chocolate.
White chocolate isn’t technically proper chocolate as it contains cocoa butter rather than cocoa solids. It’s sweeter and creamier than all the other chocolate types.
How much is the chocolate industry worth?
(Zion Market Research)
In the year 2017, the industry throughout the world was worth around $103.28 billion and has been growing ever since. The global chocolate market continues to increase in value as the years go by.
It is estimated that, by 2024, the industry will be worth $161.56 billion. It is believed that CAGR will experience a growth of about 7% in the time from the year 2018 to the year 2024. The world’s largest chocolate manufacturers continue to grow their revenue as time goes on.
Which international corporations dominate the chocolate trade?
The chocolate industries are filled with many corporations, both small and big, which offer everything from fancy chocolate and Swiss chocolate brands to the everyday candy bars you buy from the grocery store.
The number one corporation dominating the chocolate trade is Mars, Incorporated, which manages net sales of $17.64 billion. This company sells some everyday favorites when it comes to chocolate bars, including the Mars bar, Twix, M&Ms, and Snickers.
In the second place is Mondelēz International, which owns Toblerone, Cadbury, Milka, and many others. This company manages net sales worth $14.862 billion.
How much chocolate is consumed per year in the world?
(The World Atlas of Chocolate)
Worldwide, chocolate is consumed in large amounts, but some countries consume more than others. To start with, Switzerland is responsible for the most chocolate consumption per capita in the world. Each year, the European country consumes around 22.36 lbs of chocolate. Austria consumes the second-highest amount of chocolate in the world, with 20.13 lbs being eaten each year.
Following Switzerland and Austria is Ireland, consuming around 19.47 lbs of chocolate a year. After Ireland is Germany and then Norway.
The above chocolate statistics and facts probably made your mouth water. But we also hope that they gave you some new insights into the sweet treat, its history, and the industry that produces, manufactures, and sells the candy bars we all love these days. Given how much chocolate is consumed around the world each day, it’s surprising how little people know about chocolate, where it comes from, and how it’s made and sold.
- Brussels Airport
- BU News Service
- Content Bash
- Everyday Health
- Expo Net
- Irish Mirror
- Lake Champlain Chocolates
- Manufacturing Global
- Market Research
- Money Inc
- Mordor Intelligence
- National Today
- Smithsonian Magazine
- The Chocolate Society
- The Daily Meal
- The Guardian
- The World Atlas of Chocolate
- Trading Visions
- U.S Food and Drug Administration
- Washington Times
- What’s Cooking America
- World Atlas
- Zion Market Research