Chocolate-Making In Motion
15 days after a crazy and inspiring end to our Placebo Chocolate Project campaign, I'm excited to share a number of fun updates with you:
- We are now sourcing our organic, fair-trade chocolate from Colombia through Cordillera Chocolate. It was a nice twist of fate that put me in touch with Norman, the founder of Cordillera. A chocolatier friend of mine promised that Cordillera's chocolate was the BEST CHOCOLATE EVER, and wished that she could use the chocolate for her business - she couldn't because it could only be ordered in larger quantities. A few minutes later, Norman and I were on the phone, and a few days after that we had chocolate at our doorstep. Cordillera goes beyond organic - using no pesticides in any part of their business, and far beyond fair-trade - paying farmers 150% of what fair-trade asks business to pay, while also giving the funds three years before the cacao is ready and providing tools that farmers need (including, in one case, a fire-truck).
- We've just tallied our surveys depicting what size chocolate bars you prefer, and whether you prefer dark or white chocolate. The results surprised me :) While most of the world prefers milk chocolate twice as much as dark chocolate, YOU prefer dark chocolate 63% to 37%. And even though during the campaign, we only featured our 1 lb. organic, fair-trade chocolate bars, when it came time to choose your rewards, you wanted 4 ounce chocolate bars more than anything - 73 of you asked for 4 ounce JOY chocolate bars, 45 asked for 8 ounce LOVE chocolate bars, and just 22 asked for the huge 1 lb. INSPIRE chocolate bars. It was last minutes calls with some of you that gave us the idea to offer chocolates at different sizes, and I'm glad those of you who convinced me were right. A lot of people will benefit from your feedback!
- We are still in the process of learning to make perfect chocolate. We made our first chocolate bars without tempering (tempering is the process of heating and cooling chocolate at very exact temperatures to allow the chocolate to look glazed and keep for up to 18 months), and they didn't look so good. They weren't shiny and we saw white streaks on them after a few days. So we took a tempering class from Leslie, a good friend, Placebo Chocolate Project contributor, and fellow chocolatier (see her amazing Le Marias truffles here!). She helped us create the perfect tempering process - and our last few chocolates have looked great. But then we had a new problem: each pound of chocolate took about an hour to make. So today we bought a professional tempering machine - which allows us to automate the process of making perfect, long-lasting, shiny looking chocolate bars (~ 6 lbs. of chocolate an hour without the hard labor and perfect every time!). The professional tempering machine will show up at our doorstep in one to two weeks. Until then, we'll try to get out as many chocolates using the manual process as possible!
- Almost one third of you signed up for group Skype calls that will help us to together build an inspiring direction for the organization. This week I'll be sending you times that you can sign up for the calls. At a maximum, we'll have 8 people per call. I'm so excited to continue collaborating as we build this wonderful organization together, and I know our calls will be super-inspiring. If any of you who didn't sign up for the calls wants to participate, just write to me at email@example.com.
Thanks to all of your love, inspiration, and support, things are moving along nicely. We're so excited, now, to deliver you the most amazing and meaningful chocolates you've ever tasted, and then to take the next steps in growing this special organization together.
Warmest regards, Danny & the Placebo Chocolate Project team
PS A few of you have asked me this question, so I'll add the answer here: If you want additional chocolate to go out with your rewards, feel free to order more at placeboeffect.com and just write a note on the order form to let us know to ship the chocolate with your existing rewards!
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Pledge $1 or moreYou selected
Our love and gratitude - every dollar counts!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $10 or moreYou selected
INTRO PACKAGE: A Facebook and Twitter shout out + a fun, limited edition Placebo Chocolate Project PDF storybook about how we can use chocolate to change the world. (the storybook is included in all packages over $10!)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $25 or moreYou selected
INSPIRE PACKAGE: One of our very first Placebo chocolate bars (US shipping included). We will be rolling a different bar out each week beginning when the Kickstarter fundraiser ends, and you can choose ANY of them - examples of designs can be found in the main text!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $50 or moreYou selected
LOVE PACKAGE: TWO one-pound inspirational chocolate bars (US shipping included) + join us on our first founding team member call and help us create the direction and inspiration for the Placebo Chocolate Project as we grow and move forward + mention on our website as a Founding Team Member!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $75 or moreYou selected
JOY PACKAGE: THREE one-pound inspirational chocolate bars (US shipping included) + join us on three quarterly founding team Skype calls to help determine the direction of the Placebo Chocolate Project for the rest of 2012 + mention on website as Founding Team Member.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $125 or moreYou selected
GOLD PACKAGE: Delivery of your favorite Placebo chocolate bar every month for SIX months (US shipping included) + access to all team Skype calls + personal 30-minute call with creator Danny + mention on our website as a Gold Founding Team Member.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $250 or moreYou selected
PLATINUM PACKAGE: Delivery of your preferred Placebo chocolate bar every month for ONE YEAR (US shipping included) + access to all team Skype calls + TWO personal 30-minute call with creator Danny + mention on our website as a Platinum Founding Team Member.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $500 or moreYou selected
CONFLICT-FREE DIAMOND PACKAGE: Delivery of your preferred Placebo chocolate bar every month for TWO YEARS (US shipping included) + access to all team Skype calls + TWO personal calls with creator Danny + 5 ornamental chocolate molds + mention on our website as a Conflict-Free Diamond Founding Team Member.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $1,000 or moreYou selected
FINANCIAL SPONSOR PACKAGE: Everything in the previous package + lunch or dinner with Placebo Effect founder Danny Jacobs (depending on geographical constraints we may have to do a long Skype meeting) + shared financial information for the organization each quarter.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $5,000 or moreYou selected
FINANCIAL ADVISORY PACKAGE: Everything in the previous package + invitation to quarterly advisory meetings to review the financial health of the organization, and provide advice that can help us make strong core values-based decisions to ensure that the Placebo Chocolate Project stays financially healthy as we use chocolate to inspire love and joy all over the world!Estimated delivery:
- (40 days)