A little while ago, I talked about the bleak future that seems looming over the world’s most favorite treat’s availability in a couple of decades, if things remain the same as they are and we do nothing to change anything. Of course responsible people aren’t just waiting to see when and how the chocolates are going to vanish from the face of the earth – rather they are working tirelessly to reverse things for the better, at least to stop the continuous damage and prepare the grounds for a promising future. This group of people includes national leaders, UN high officials, researchers, scientists, local community leaders, industry leaders and important decision makers from every aspect of the whole industry. And they have been working for quite some time to improve the general scheme of things.
As such, they have broad agenda and grand plans and intricate details of complicated plans about how to deal with the future. But what about us, the average Joes of the world? Is there anything that we can do? Can we contribute without breaking our heart by stopping eating chocolates? Can we participate in the quest of making chocolates forever? Let’s see.
Experts may be pointing out grave economic and geopolitical issues – change of climate, skyrocketing demand in Brazil and China, Corona Pandemic after the Ebola rampage to West African nations of Ivory Coast and Ghana who grow cocoa and vice versa.
But have we ever thought about our parts in making the cocoa as probable endangered species? I am hearing you murmuring under your breath about buying chocolates as irregularly as every other day. But can we really blame us for loving the gifts that the Gods gave us? There are many versions of delight available these days – from carefully handmade premium chocolates from the Melbournian outfit Schoko Chocolates to factory-made, generic chocolate bars, to satisfy our insatiable craving. And we seem to engulf them left and right. So, if I say we are an intricate part of the problem, it wouldn’t be a stretch too far.
In about 10 to 15 years before the present days, there has been a dramatic change in the chocolate trend. Gone are the days when chocolates were the foil-wrapped treats lying strategically in the shelves just before the tills of newsagents to be seen and picked up by. Now is the age of cocoa decadence. We want everything – the bare minimum of 70% cocoa solids to dark sprinkling chocolates. What about chocolate whirl, savory baklava or cheesy bread and butter pudding with chocolates? Would you believe me if I say some people (other people) love to paint their bodies with liquid chocolates and then they feel ready to taste? Or how about deep fried chocolate bars or wrapping bacon around them? Doesn’t it make you feel that these acts are more like first-degree crime against food? Apparently some people don’t feel that way and keep using (or abusing) chocolates in imaginative ways. The point I am trying to make here is that I feel we have gone too far in the name of finding creative new ways to consume chocolates. The world is full of chocolate nerds now, toiling on to find the latest ingenious bean-to-bar start-ups.
Then there is the craze for using pure cocoa. Having 70% pure cocoa in chocolates has become the gold standard and directly drives up the demands drastically. And we have also started ignoring milk and white chocolates, though they are in their own rights are worthy inclusion in chocolate recipes when and if they are used proportionately beneficial to our health. That's why I can say that if we were to just stick with the proverbial chocolate bars with considerably lower percentages of cocoa, we probably wouldn’t be in this mess. If it happens that one day after waking up everybody starts demanding pure cocoa, there would be a worldwide famine of cocoa beans. So, if I point out the pointy finger to our insatiable cravings, I believe it wouldn’t be too far away from the truth.
The Code Of Conduct
As chocolate lovers, we should start thinking in terms of preserving what’s left. If that entails extreme measures – then so be it. If it turned out that to save and preserve cocoa from becoming extinct, we need to pool our pennies for the heavenly taste of one small bar as the prices will go through the sky, we needn’t be bothered, because by becoming adapted with that scenario, we are letting the future generations to have a chance to taste. But before going to that extreme, chocolatiers have come up with a code of conduct – for all of us chocolate-chompers to follow.
Now get to know a few of them:
Chocolate Is Not Satisfying Hunger
We should remember that chocolates are foods that can only be treated as desserts. In no way or situation, they should be used to satisfy hunger. That’s why chocolate sellers should step away from the enticing advertisement of ‘three-for-two’ grabs. We need to start thinking in terms of rediscovering the specialness and stop taking it for granted. As the saying goes ‘less is more’ – we should be after something premium, not a big box of something distantly resembling cocoa. In that way, chocolates will become special again. And most importantly we need to savor the taste rather than gulping it down in two seconds.
Rationing Chocolate While Being Used In Confections
When we indulge ourselves in the triple chocolate cake that makes us swoon, is it really necessary to use the butter cream from the cocoa solid? What about chocolate ganache and the white chocolate curl ice creams? If we think objectively, it surely will make a lot of sense not to have a lot of chocolates in those products. And when that thinking interprets into reality, the uniqueness of foods may return because there will be a substantial reduction in the amount of chocolates in things like cakes or flavored milks. This will also drive down the demand of cocoa from confectioners who are not chocolate makers.
Get Ready To Pay More – A Whole Lot More
If a chocolate shake becomes a luxury item, it might seem like bad news for consumers, but the silver lining is that there will be less demand for cocoa. It will also mean good news for cocoa farmers who may enjoy better quality of lives, with the extra money they might receive from high-priced cocoa.
No More Abusing Of Chocolates
Yes, I am talking about ‘chocochicken’ – chocolate fried chicken with chocolate ketchup, to make the chicken groovy. I am also talking about choco-fried potatoes with green-choco chilli-fried rice. These food crimes need to stop – by us, by never tasting them again.
The problem is there is no one-stop service for solution. There isn’t any silver bullet to send the cocoa-crisis six feet under. We all are in it, and it will take all of us to take part in saving cocoa.
But as an optimist and furious lover of chocolates, I would say let’s start right this moment