Discoveries at the Jungle Candy Month: Cote D’Or Chocolate from Belgium and Morinaga Hi-Chew Candy from Japan

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​From chocolate, to fruity gummies and hard candy, to liquorice, caramels, marshmallows, taffy, and more, candy has been around for centuries. It comes in all shapes and sizes, too! But where did “candy” come from? Let’s take a look.

Candy can be traced back to the ancient Egyptians where they, along with the Chinese and Indians, combined fruits, nuts and honey to make sweets. Once sugar processing was discovered, though, it kickstarted a new candy industry. In the middle ages it was only a delicacy, but once the 17th century hit, sugar was more common. The English and Americans boiled sugar to make candies mixed with fruit and nuts. From there the candy train was rolling full steam ahead. By the 19th century candy was being mass produced all over the world and a huge variety of products were hitting the market.

Chocolate came around about 4,000 years ago in pre-Olmec cultures living in present-day Mexico. It was first consumed as a bitter beverage rather than a sweet treat. They roasted and ground the cacao beans into a paste that they mixed with water, vanilla, honey, chili peppers and other spices to brew a frothy chocolate drink. Chocolate candy as we know it today was created in 1828, when Coenraad Johannes van Houten invented the cocoa press. It would squeeze the fatty cocoa butter from roasted cacao beans leaving behind a dry cake that could be pulverized into a fine powder that could be combined with other ingredients and molded into a chocolate treat.

Cote D’Or Chocolate – Belgium

​Cote D’Or has been making chocolate since 1883 in Belgium. The name is French for Gold Coast, where most of their cacao beans are being grown. Their bars are a special blend of roasted cocoa beans from West Africa and noble beans from South America. Expect a super rich and creamy, pure chocolate taste.

Where you can find these: Fairfield Location: Yellow 6 // Eastgate Location: Yellow 8

​Did you know: A jewel thief made off with $28 million dollars of gems in 2007 because he was able to gain the trust of the guards working the bank in Antwerp, Belgium, by repeatedly offering them chocolate.

Hi-Chew Candy – Japan
​If you love Starburst you have just found your candy of choice within this month’s Discoveries at the Jungle. These chewy fruit candies from Japan have been around since the 50s and come in seven flavors. If you’re the kind of person who really likes a particular flavor of Starburst, Hi-Chew actually packages their flavors separately. No more giving all those lemon chews away!
Where you can find these: Fairfield Location: Orange 3 // Eastgate Location: Yellow 2

​Did you know: Japan is the largest confectionery market in the Asian Pacific region and the largest consumer of chocolate.

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