I may be biased but I do love this chocolate…
Years ago St Eval was well known for being a Royal Air Force station. The station was built in 1938 and was used to conduct anti-submarine and anti-shipping patrols during WWII but was closed in 1959. The site was decommissioned and sold off. To this day, parts of the site remain, and just to the side of the old abandoned runways sits the Kernow Chocolate factory. This hasn’t always been the home of Kernow Chocolate. They started out on a much smaller scale but now its a growing Cornish business with great ethics and a fantastic product line.
Kernow Chocolate was born out of the Shapland family’s food and drink shop in Wadebridge called Kernow Harvest. They discovered the neccessity for producing a product of their own. After some head scratching chocolate was the winner and they went for it. The company has grown and grown since 2005 increasing in stockists, employees and smiles. So much so, in 2015 production was moved to the current site at St Eval. Chocolate does really well through a recession by the way.
Sitting down with Kernow Chocolate
I was quite taken-a-back by the ethos of Kernow Chocolate. They really are a family business and they treat everybody as such. The facility is well laid out working factory with cafe and shop. Visitors can sit and enjoy a hot drink and a freshly baked slice of cake whilst watching workers pouring chocolate in to moulds.
The production could be more mechanised and the company could have less staff but that wouldn’t be the right thing to do, even if it could save money. The importance of employing staff was abundantly clear as soon as I sat down to talk with Operations Director Andy Soden (the son in law).
Andy told me about how they are living the Cornish dream and despite Cornwall being a lower earning county they are creating opportunities for others.
I spent quite a while chatting to Andy actually and he gave me a great insight in to what Kernow Chocolate is all about. They are constantly developing products and packaging. The range is pretty impressive and they have more in the pipeline so I will be sure to keep an eye on what is to come.
I thoroughly enjoyed all the flavours but I must say the caramel and sea salt is my favourite of the bunch.
Is it an expensive alternative to the big high street brands?
It isn’t as cheap as the big brands like Cadburys and Nestle. It couldn’t be, but they aren’t trying to be, and for good reason. Kernow Chocolate is a difference in attitude to eating chocolate.
When you purchase a Kernow Chocolate bar you are supporting ethical sourcing of high quality cocoa from sustainable growers. It tastes so much better when you know that the farmers are getting a fair deal. If you would like to know more then check out the Cocoa Horizons initiative.
Keep an eye out on for Kernow Chocolate in the shops and if visiting Cornwall why not take some home with you to share with others.
Big thanks to Kernow chocolate.