FAQ 9: What is bean to bar Chocolate?

FAQ 9: What is bean to bar Chocolate?

Posted by Kylie Suich

'bean to bar' Chocolate is a literal explanation for chocolate which has been made solely from beans sourced from a farm/geographical area and then processed 'in house' by the chocolatier.  The term helps people understand the difference between couverture chocolate (or chocolate liquor), which has been crafted by a large company for lots of chocolatiers to use and turn into delicious treats. 

There are only a few varieties of Cacao trees grown commercially around the world in the rainforest conditions they love.  'bean to bar' Chocolate means the artisan producer has bought the fresh cacao bean direct from the farmer, then they manage all stages of processing the beans in house themselves to emphasis the natural flavour notes of the cacao bean to produce their final product.  

'bean to bar' Chocolate is usually 'single origin' sourced and tends to be named after the area it is grown, as it reinforces the effort taken to ethically source the bean from farmers so they earn a proper wage.

This style of chocolate usually has fewer added ingredients, as it is crafted to celebrate the natural flavour of the cacao bean. I can pretty much guarantee it will taste amazing, especially compared to chocolate with lots of artificial colours and flavours. 

As it is made 'in house' there is more labour involved, specialised equipment and usually organic ingredients are added, which all add up to make it a premium priced chocolate compared to mass manufactured chocolate.  


If you are not sure how your chocolate is made, check out the socials for the company and you will soon find out.  'bean to bar' producers will regularly post about where / who they buy their cacao beans from; how much they pay for the cacao beans (usually above fair trade price so the farmer earns a decent living). They also post videos of the farmers harvesting their crop, share pictures of the farm; or pics and videos of their inhouse bean roasting and chocolate conching processes, as ethical sourcing and small batch processing is part of their point of difference. 

Birdsnake Chocolate, based in Melbourne are one of the leading vegan 'bean to bar producers in Australia and we stock their entire range. Monsieur Truffe (the chocolate in our pic with a pink background) and Meltdown Artisan also have 'bean to bar' varieties, which we occasionally stock. 

Fancy some bean to bar chocolate now, then shop our Chocolate Tasting boxes and leave a comment at the check out to tell me you want some Birdsnake Chocolate in your box.    

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