In 2005 Alex Shapland, his wife Jayne, daughter Nicola and then husband-to-be Andy Soden started making chocolate from a factory on their farm, to sell in their family-run food and drink store in Wadebridge. The chocolate venture soon grew and more family members joined the team when Alex and Jayne’s son Philip and his partner Vicki returned from Australia to bolster the ranks.
“We sold our chocolate in the shop, at local farmers’ markets and at as many food and drink shows we could get to,” explains Andy, who is now Operations Director. “Before long, we started picking up individual accounts to supply other farmshops, delicatessens and many local tourist attractions. Production stepped up a notch and has carried on that way ever since.”
In 2015 the chocolate business had grown so much that the family moved production to a new site in St Eval, where they now employ 20 staff. With a factory, shop and café, visitors are welcome to come along to taste the produce and watch the chocolatiers hard at work from a viewing area. The main chocolate making time is 10am – 4pm weekdays.
From tempering to wrapping, all bars are handmade. There are 20 flavours, ranging from chocolate classics like orange or mint, to the imaginative cookies & cream, lemon meringue or Eton Mess. Then there’s the Macondo range championing Single Origin chocolate bars made from some of the world’s best cocoa.
Kernow Chocolate packaging is as delightful as its produce – from the Photographic range with beautiful scenery, to the wonderful vintage designs of Devon artist Becky Bettesworth in the collection bearing her name.
All packaging is recyclable or reusable, and the business participates in the Cocoa Horizons™ initiative; a three-pronged approach to driving positive change in cocoa cultivation, starting from the source.
You can buy Kernow Chocolate online on their website.
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