The kind people at Ritter Sport chocolate recently sent me lots of free chocolate!!
The reason they contacted me was because Ritter Sport is a great fit for this blog: conscientious.
Ritter Sport is really taking the initiative in responsible cocoa farming by supporting under-resourced farmers in areas of Nicaragua who would otherwise be forced to destroy rainforest to grow land-damaging crops, by teaching these farmers agroforestry farming. Agroforestry is farming that does not destroy the rainforest but instead utilizes crops and practices that co-exist and even benefit the surrounding land. You can read more about the CACAONICA project here.
My first question was: if this product is made so responsibly, why isn’t there a “fair trade certification” seal on the packaging? Upon doing research on fair trade certification, it turns out that only products manufactured in the US and Canada qualify for most “fair trade certification” programs. Ritter Sport chocolate is manufactured in Waldenbuch, Germany. This is not true of all fair trade certification programs, but indeed, most.
In addition, Ritter Sport adopts environmentally friendly practices in their manufacturing facilities, creating their own power plant focusing on cleaner technologies, and working toward using more renewable energies. You can read more about their environmental practices here.
So, I’m convinced this is “responsibly made” chocolate – but what does it taste like?
Well, I didn’t trust only my own personal opinion so I also forced 7 other people to try the 4 varieties of chocolate and rate them on scale from 1 to 5 (1 being ick and 5 being the best).
Here are the 4 varieties we tried and some notes:
Milk Chocolate with Neapolitan Wafers – I was disappointed to find out that this product contained trans fats (hydrogenated palm kernel oil). I think we all know how I feel about those. Most likely this comes from the wafers. I can taste trans fat in anything and this was my least favorite flavor, personally.
Yogurt – You might think “yogurt and chocolate, ew!” but the tanginess was really good with the milk chocolate! I liked it!
Dark Chocolate – 50% Cocoa, the dark chocolate fans rated this one the highest.
Milk Chocolate with Whole Almonds – Probably my personal favorite, in my opinion they seem to have used higher quality nuts than some chocolates I’ve had (Hershey’s, I’m looking at you…)
With 8 people rating these 4 varieties, which variety “won” the highest score??
None of them!
What’s funny is, for each variety there were exactly 2 people who rated that flavor a “5”!
The average score for each variety was either 4 or 3.75
I think this goes to show that most people like pretty much all 4 of these varieties, and according to each one’s taste, there is at least one variety that each person loved!
Now for the fun part!
Ritter Sport is allowing me to give away 4 boxes of chocolate containing 84 mini bars in each. These are the tiny single-squares you might see in stores like World Market. I will pick 4 winners and each winner gets 84 minibars! That’s a lot of chocolate!
To enter leave a comment on this post, please make sure that if you are posting without a Google login that has an email address associated with it, give me some way to contact you. I am new to this so if I can’t contact you somehow, I am going to give up and pick somebody else.
For additional entries, do one of the following and please mention in your comment if you have done one or more of these (that is the only way I will know to enter you additional times):
- Tweet this giveaway (Twitter, you know)
- Subscribe to ConscientiousConfusion.com in a RSS reader or via email
- Blog about this giveaway or Conscientious Confusion – please leave a link to your post in the comment!
I will pick the winner by 11:59 PM on January 2, 2010.
Good luck and have a great holiday!