Heat Resistant Chocolate: The New Defence against Global Warming

Swiss Chocolate, author angelcandy.baby, source Wikimedia

Swiss Chocolate, author angelcandy.baby, source Wikimedia

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Swiss Chocolate Makers are working hard to ensure that a warmer world will still be able to enjoy premium chocolate treats.

According to The Daily Meal;

Swiss Chocolatier Barry Callebaut Creates Heat-Resistant Chocolate to Survive Global Warming

Swiss chocolate company Barry Callebaut has created heat-resistant chocolate in an effort to expand to more tropical climates.

Other chocolate companies, like Nestlé and Hershey, are also developing heat-tolerant chocolates to sell in warmer regions.

In an effort to introduce its products to new markets, including warmer climates, Swiss chocolate company Barry Callebaut has introduced commercially available heat-resistant luxury chocolate, a new blend that can resist temperatures up to 38 degrees Celsius or 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit — four degrees higher than normal.

Read more: http://www.thedailymeal.com/cook/swiss-chocolatier-barry-callebaut-creates-heat-resistant-chocolate-survive-global-warming/122815

As someone who lives on the Southern edge of the Australian tropics, I see this as an important development in food technology. My wife keeps all her chocolate in the fridge, which cuts down space for storing beer fresh vegetables. If this new kind of chocolate can be stored outside of the fridge, it will reduce pressure on me to buy a bigger fridge, which will help save the planet.

99 thoughts on “Heat Resistant Chocolate: The New Defence against Global Warming

  1. Daft, daft, daft! Take English bought chocolate to South Africa and it turns into goo. Buy your Chocolate in South Africa and it is normal. This ambient melt factor has been under control for decades.

    • I don’t like chocolate anyway, unless it is a hot drink, and then it is only the hot that I like.
      How about some chocolate for the Russkies at Vostok. Some -94 deg. C chocolate is needed for them.

      • george says,

        Some -94 deg. C chocolate is needed for them.

        Hmmm… climate targeted chocolates for Vostok should melt at about -55 deg. C then, eh? Let’s see Swiss work that one out ;o)
        (P.S. Strictly for george e: Caught 2 bluegills on a rubber spider today. The ant imitation wasn’t bringing them up. Must have had 30 swings at that spider, but their timing was off.That is a personal record for latest surface hits in my neck of the woods. Surface action usually shuts down in late October or early November. P.P.S.Anyone fighting against Global Warming is nuts in my book.)

  2. I was quite sure that summer chocolate was not the same as winter chocolate. When I was young I never got enough chocolate so I promised my self a surfeit when I was older and had money to spare. I have since eaten a lot of chocolate.

  3. The melting point of chocolate is controlled by the fats in the recipe. The very best chocolates have only cocoa butter, the fat the bean came with in the first place. Cheaper chocolates have had most, or all of the cocoa butter replaced with derivatives of coconut oil, which can be manipulated to create an array of melting points. Ice cream coverture, the stuff around a chocolate coated icecream, has a low melting point because it’s placed in the mouth at a much lower temperature than block chocolate, and the icecreams are dipped into liquid coverture to coat them. Normal choclate at this temperature would have the texture of candle wax. Cocoa butter is sold to cosmetics manufacturers (and is quite expensive). So it’s no big deal making chocolate which melts less easily, the challenge is retaining the taste and texture.

    • Exactly.
      BTW, a lot of research has been done in the pharmaceutical industry, not only to prepare cosmetics but also to make suppositories. Cocoa butter melts at 34 – 36º C and it was the main base in suppository formulations because it melts at body temperature. I can see the new global warming scare (or not) Due to global warming, our children just aren’t going to know what a suppository is. (yay!!!)
      I am more worried about the taste (of chocolates) than the fact that I have to store them on a cool place. I hate the ones filled with toothpaste.

      • Aye!
        100.4°F is 38°C; no more melt in your mouth. Unless, as many of the cheaper brands do, they add easily soluble things like sucrose and dextrose.
        Like, e.g. fudge; which after a day or so, loses texture and gets crunchy. So we assume they also add stuff in to slow evaporation and crystal growth…
        Is this still chocolate?

      • Well the only function that is served by tooth paste, is to get the kid to put the toothbrush in his/er mouth. Honey on the brush, works just as well.
        So buy the toothpaste filled chocolates, and brush your teeth while you eat them.
        I once remember a person on welfare complaining in a letter to the newspaper editor that her welfare freebies made it hard to get by, as she spent $7.50 a month for toothpaste with her three kids.
        I get a free tiny tooth paste every time I get my teeth cleaned. I have enough to clean the teeth of the entire Chinese army for a year. A person I know, uses about 100 times as much tooth paste each day, as is necessary to clean your teeth. She slurps it like they show in the TV ads.
        Remember, that they are selling tooth paste; not cleaning teeth.
        I have never purchased shaving cream either.

      • Polyethylene glycol. It can be made to have whatever melting point you like, it’s non-toxic, and it’s always water soluble.
        Nestle recently released a press statement about newly developed heat-stable chocolates, with resistance temperatures as high as 45 C (113 °F). Apart from cocoa and sugar, it supplies your MDR of edible polymer.

    • Belgian chocolate by law was 100% cocoa butter for its fat content (even without milk fats for milk chocolates), until a few years ago forced by the European Union (and the lobbying of the chocolate makers) to lax that law. Now they may add a few % of other fats, which indeed makes export to warmer climates more easy – at the cost of quality (and the price for cocoa farmers)…
      Callebaut was (and still is) the largest Belgian quality chocolate maker, even if they merged with the French Barry and moved their headquarters to Switzerland… Most research still seems to be in Belgium.
      A family member migrated to Canada and opened chocolates stores there…
      If they still use 100% cocoa fats, but did find a trick to get higher melting points for their cocoa butter (GMO cocoa? New varieties?) that may be good, but their story is only about “ingredients” (whatever they may be) and processes:

  4. …it will reduce pressure on me to buy a bigger fridge…
    … in compensation to a double “innovation” chocolate price?
    I’ll go on keeping my normal chocolate in the fridge, like for decades.
    Cold chocolate is somewhat tastier and crunchy for me anyway. Remembers me of ice confectionary.
    No need to buy luxury chocolate from Switzerland.

  5. “If this new kind of chocolate can be stored outside of the fridge…” they need to develop an ant resistant version first. A bit of borate should do it.

  6. As a Canuk with a taste for chocolate I picked up some Mongo’s chocolate bars when I departed the Yogyakarta, Indonesia airport a few weeks ago. Mongo’s is made by a localised Belgian chocolatier who moved closer to the source.
    Mongo’s is top, top quality stuff. I don’t think the Swiss have anything on the Belgians when it comes to chocolate.
    So how does Mongo manage to keep his wares solid in the tropical heat of Central Java? The answer is simple: there is a large refrigerator holding all the stock behind the counter and after you buy it, it is up to you to keep it cool. Buy enough to create a little ‘retained cold’ cooler.
    In South Africa the cheaper choc is made with fats with more hydrogenation and a higher melting point. They are termed ‘grease bars’ by the industry. Those 70% cacao hard slabs of ‘dark chocolate’ are the real thing and hardly constitute a ‘confection’.
    The Swiss are changing their time tested formulations to expand into new territories, chasing the more adventurous Mongo. When they do they will find themselves on lands already occupied by Mars.

    • I worked for Mars some time ago, and learned a few things. The most important is that Chocolates stored at room temperature have a flavor half-life of about two weeks. I was stunned at how good M&M’s and Snickers bars taste right off the end of the manufacturing line, as they are every bit as good as hand made gourmet confections. The perceived taste problems with mass produced chocolates is caused by a long delivery pipe-line, with too much time spent in too many distribution warehouses ensuring that several months will have passed before the average consumer will have the opportunity to consume them. Learn to read the date codes … for Mars, the first digit is the last digit of the year (0..9), the next two digits are the week (00..53), the next letter is the day of the week (A=Monday), then comes the plant, the shift, the line, etc. As I write this the week after Christmas of 2015, the date codes will start with 553. Next week the prefix changes to 601. If you pop down to the local grocery, I doubt you will find anything on the shelf fresher than 530-ish (week starting with July 20th), by which time more than 10 half-lives will have expired. Mars understands the problem and has distributed its manufacturing facilities to be as close to the consumer as possible. The problem is always the middle men. Complain to your grocer and demand fresher!
      The best chocolates are like the best beers, meant to be consumed as soon as they are made, preferably while still warm. Trying to “save” them for later is pointless. Consume them now and be happy.
      That being said, the proper way to store chocolates is at 65F/18C, in the dark, and sealed from oxygen and water; an old-fashion root-cellar works best. Light and oxygen oxidize the confection (darker chocolates fair better as they have much higher anti-oxidant contents), moisture pulls out the sugars, and temperature changes undo the emulsification of the fats. If you must put your chocolate in the refrigerator, use the butter drawer as it is the warmest locale. If you must freeze it, do it as slowly as is practical to avoid thermal shock … butter drawer first, then the meat drawer, then the center of the freezer. Thawing should be the reverse. Mishandled chocolates will develop a white surface bloom, either from fat migrating to the surface from too many temperature cycles, or from sugar migration due to lack of moisture control. Note that every week stored in the freezer has the potential for moisture control problems as freezer operating cycles, door opening and closings, and pressure changes from passing weather systems all mess with the partial pressure of water vapor on the surface of the chocolate leading to sublimation and hoar frost formation even if the chocolates are well sealed.

      • Thomas,
        Interesting. Don’t know if you will see this, but I just happen to have a bag of M&Ms in my desk drawer (don’t ask why 🙂 ). The code says, “537 B MHKP 11.” So this was packaged on Tuesday of week 37 (9/10-16/215), correct? It says, “Best Before 09/2016.” I guess they just tack on a year from the package date (it won’t last a year).

      • Freshness is always such a remarkable indicator of quality; eggs, chocolate, vegetables, fruit, data. It’s not so odd that frequent data adjustments over time cause ever greater data spoilage.
        Years ago, I stopped at a factory outlet for Lay’s potato chips. Bought a few bags and took them home.
        It turned out that the chips were very fresh and are some of the best potato chips I’ve ever eaten.

        • Chocolate actually has an extremely long shelf life- years, under ideal conditions. Those conditions don’t include chucking chocolate into the fridge (which is a disaster if the chocolate was warm before doing so) because one thing chocolate will do is pick up other flavours from stuff in the fridge. Salami-infused dark chocolate isn’t especially tasty.

          • OH…no kidding. Here in the States, the candy companies have been putting chocolate bars into their holiday assortments along with “sour” things or red licorice etc…and that ruins BOTH the chocolate and the other stuff. It’s a tragic thing.

      • @Phil R – Yes, you understand and have decoded the Mars date code correctly. The consumer readable “Best Before” open dating is a recent addition to the labeling. Hersey products also have a closed manufacturer date where the first digit is the year, and the next letter is the month (A=January), so if those M&Ms had been a Hersey product, the Sep 2015 date would have been 5i.
        @Mike T – Yes Mike, technically, chocolate has a long shelf life before the emulsified fats turn racid and spoil. However, the quality of the taste of the product degrades rapidly with a half-live measured in a few weeks.
        I have not tried Salami-infused chocolate (yes the fats in the chocolates will acquire aromatic flavors), but I have tried Chocolate Salamis, and dark chocolate covered bacon. Next up … deep fat fried bacon dipped in dark chocolate.

    • Yes, as the article says, they are expanding into warmer markets – an adaptation. The article does not mention AGW / CC – only the headline. Come on, guys – let’s not put words into their mouths (only chocolate).

    • Callebaut is only “Swiss” for their recent merge with the French Barry for their headquarters, the main research still is in Belgium as far as I know. They have one of the finest chocolates available for any bakery – annex chocolates…

  7. Oh for God’s sake.
    I was at university for the second time (grad math) when the so-called climate scientists decided that we were going to have catastrophic global warming rather than the catastrophic global cooling that we had been told of up till then. I was informed that the temperature average would go up and the higher temperatures would come mainly at night and mainly toward the poles in the higher latitudes.
    How the hades can chocolate melt if it is in my air-conditioned house or my refrigerator here in the lower latitudes? The Wife (blessed be her name) loves chocolate and has not complained about it melting since we were married in ’74 back in the “ice age is coming” scare through “the oceans are going to boil away” scare of today.
    Do we really have to blame every darn thing on “global warming”? How did those primitive Romans survive their warming period? Were they that much tougher than modern people?

  8. The confectioners of Europe have always been at the forefront of the foodie movement that involves selling you less food for more money, so I’m not surprised at one more gimmick that will attempt to separate the truly stupid from their cash.

  9. Heat resistant chocolate (spit out the wick)
    Chocolate-scented candles (eat the puddle when it’s done)
    Two products in one! Problem solved!

  10. You “store” chocolate in the fridge???? You have more willpower than me, I don’t store it anywhere other than my stomach where it ends up minutes after being purchased or received!!

  11. We had heat resistant chocolate during the first desert storm in 90-91. It tasted like card board. Time to bring it back.

    • Tropical chocolate from Viet Nam era C-rations would probably be consider an illegal torture device now; the C-rats had pack of 4 lucky strikes or pall mall cigarettes too.

  12. well done Switzerland, you have achieved what the Australian Army food sciences guys did before the 80s. Heat resistant chocolate was in Aust Army ration packs before the 80s. They must have really seen global warming coming…

  13. Nothing new. I’ve seen piles of chocolate bars in open air market stalls in the heat of Tel Aviv.
    Just another fad to the god of the nonentity of climate change.

  14. The Indonesians already have a heat resistent chocolate called Silver Queen. A necessary item on any surfing boat trip in Indonesia. Guaranteed never to melt in the Sun. 🙂

  15. Okay people… You have until 31 December 2015 to become a founding member of the Open Atmospheric Society. The Ad is on the right side of the page you are currently reading almost at the top of the page, to the right of this article. It says “Join Now – OAS”. If you enjoy this website, pitch in a little and support this venture.

      • Once, in a galaxy far far away I was a confectioner, and wondered then and still do, why people like white chocolate. It’s just sugar, milk powder and cocoa butter, with the bit that creates flavour, the cocoa liquor, absent. As an aside, chocolate lovers may remember the Cadbury’s “glass and a half of fresh full cream milk” ads. It’s utter nonsense of course, chocolate makers studiously avoid getting water into their product, so dried milk powder is hardly “fresh milk”. Some years ago I wrote to Cadbury’s on the issue, and while I didn’t receive a reply, after a while the ads with the “fresh milk” ceased.

  16. Chocolate is totally unnecessary and has a large carbon footprint, so is helping to destroy the planet. Thus, these chocolatiers are nothing but climate criminals, and those who indulge in chocolate are guilty of supporting a planet-destroying industry.
    Hey, it’s their own logic.

  17. So, not only do they not melt in your hand,
    they don’t melt in your mouth either!?
    It is comforting to know that chocolate will be ready when/if the temperatures go up another .01 degree C.
    I’m just guessing, but I’ll bet the price of these chocolates will go up more than .01 percent.

  18. I think it’s time to apply for some grant money to study the effects of global warming on the taste of chocolates.
    Just to be clear, there will be no models, only empirical studies.

  19. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_military_chocolate
    “In 1943, the Procurement Division of the Army approached Hershey about producing a confectionery-style chocolate bar with improved flavor that would still withstand extreme heat for issue in the Pacific Theater. After a short period of experimentation, the Hershey company began producing Hershey’s Tropical Bar. The bar was designed for issue with field and specialty rations, such as the K ration, and originally came in 1-ounce (28 g) and 2-ounce (56 g) sizes. After 1945, it came in 4-ounce (112 g) D ration sizes as well. … In 1957, the bar’s formula was changed to make it more appetizing. The unpopular oat flour was removed, ‘non-fat milk solids’ replaced ‘skim-milk powder’, ‘Cocoa powder’ replaced ‘cacao fat’, and artificial vanilla flavoring was added. It greatly improved the flavor of the bar, but it was still difficult to chew.

    In the late 1980s, the US Army’s Natick Labs created a new high-temperature chocolate (dubbed the “Congo Bar” by researchers) that could withstand heat in excess of 140 °F (60 °C).
    During Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm, Hershey’s Chocolate was the major manufacturer, shipping 144,000 bars to American troops in the southwest Asia theater.”

  20. Is this another case of the story’s author (Karen Lo) being cavalier and letting their bias shine through? Did the chocolate makers specifically mention “global warming” and “climate change” as reasons for creating more heat-tolerant chocolate, or is it just about opening up possibilities (like more lax storage requirements and expansion into new markets)?

    • No. Here is a direct quote from their website:

      Reducing our carbon footprint requires a dual approach. First, we aim to reduce the use of energy. Second, we are switching from fossil fuels to renewable energies, such as biomass from empty cocoa shells. In 2013/14 we reached our 5-year target to reduce carbon emissions per tonne of activity by 20%. The new 5-year target is to reduce our carbon footprint by a further 20% by 2018/19.

      The greenwash is strong with this company.

      • In that case it’s another example of doing a good thing (making more heat-resistant chocolate) for the all the wrong reasons (to “combat” “global warming”/”climate change”).

      • That doesn’t say this chocolate was created to resist “global warming”. Deebodk is right : That detail was most probably added by the journalist. What Callebaut wants is “to expand to more tropical climates”.

  21. Climate change and our endless efforts to combat it, allows mankind to act as stupid as he possibly can. I think in some quarters this is called freedom.

  22. I believe this chocolate issue is an elite-world problem.
    I volunteer in Washington State to work on trails – think steep mountains, rain, mud, rocks, fallen trees to be cut out (aka, “a logout”). Lots of fun.
    At break-times we get treats – mostly little candy bars with chocolate. Sometimes it has melted on the front seat of the crew leader’s truck. Maybe next it gets chilled in a cooler with ice. Repeat.
    No one ever thinks it is anything but great.

  23. My preference is sipping chocolate. So any attempt at sending me regular chocolate if I am in Aruba, Mexico will be appreciated. And devoured immediately.

  24. Since it is not April 1, I must believe this is not a hoax. It is becoming more crazy all the time. I didn’t know that a Callebaut scion (original Callebaut is a Belgian company) now engages in nonsense like this, unless he believes that there is a ‘marketing’ advantage to sell more chocolate to the gullible green crowd.

    • They merged a few years ago with Barry and moved the headquarters to Switzerland, most of the research and production still is in Belgium, I suppose… But to call them a “Swiss” chocolate maker???

  25. Some chocolatiers add paraffin to their product to raise the softening point and to add a sheen to the surface finish. It ends up looking (and tasting) rather like a brown crayon.

    • No product should be needed to give a sheen to chocolate. It’s moulded into shapes and the moulds have a high polish. The chocolates then have a high sheen naturally.

  26. Does WordPress purposefully load those enormous video ads onto your site to jam the system. Your site now slows everything and often jams. Maybe to force people away?

  27. Isn’t it generally the case that the higher the melting point of a fat, the easier it is to sludge the blood cells and cause angina? The food police should be all over this one!

  28. The new melt-resistant Swiss Chocolatier Barry Callebaut’s Heat-Resistant, Global Warming-Resistant chocolate was developed by introducing vulcanized rubber into the chocolate. It makes the chocolate taste foul, but what the heck, it’s fighting Global Warming which is the big aim these days.

  29. Not a moment too soon. In the 50s and 60s, summer in Adelaide meant chocolate paste. And my aunt in England used to send us selections of English chocolate bars (Mars, Bounty, etc.) as Christmas presents. They came by sea mail, and usually arrived in January. Let your imagination do the rest.

  30. Ignorance is so much fun. Do they not know that a warmer climate only means longer summers and milder shorter winters? That means linger growing season and less expensive heating bill in winter. That’s all it takes to raise the average temperature. Heat waves and cold snaps would still occur and they can occur at any time. One of the worst heat waves in Maine occurs during the 1970s when we were in the coldest part of the recent climate swing.

  31. Swiss Chocolatier Barry Callebaut is just trying to expand into more markets, they do not mention global warming. The Daily Meal headline does push global warming and is designed to appeal to stupid which is what media headlines do as a matter of course.
    This news media behavior of promoting ignorance is one of the more serious dangers of Climate Change.

  32. “Which will help save the planet?” And 18 morons (at this time) give the story a unanimous 5/5 rating? We’ll do something about that…

Comments are closed.