Deanna Pucciarelli traces the fascinating and often cruel history of chocolate. here >. Theo’s first chocolate bar was sold in March 2006. Chocolate may be the “food of the gods,” but for most of its 4,000-year history, it was actually consumed as a bitter beverage rather than as a sweet edible treat. Established in 2006, it is the first organic fair trade-certified cocoa producer in the United States. So how did we get from a bitter beverage to the chocolate bars of today? Until then, chocolate only existed as a bitter, foamy drink in Mesoamerica. [4], In April 2018, Etienne Patout, a former Kellogg's executive, became the company's CEO. [4] Fairhall died of brain cancer in 2007. All Rights Reserved. [2], The business was established in 2006 by Jeff Fairhall and Joe Whinney in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle. One responded. "Fair Trade Gambit. He published more than 30 advertisements in The Stranger about various religious ideas, revelations, and conspiracy theories. Originally prepared only as a drink, chocolate was served as a bitter liquid, mixed with spices or corn puree. Joe Whinney and Jeff Fairhall worked together to create the Theo Chocolate Company. Any disruption in the import of Cocoa can disrupt the supply and demand of the product in the United States. After finding an interested investor in Seattle, Washington, the decision was made to build the Theo Chocolate factory, named after the Theobroma cacao tree. After Jeff Fairhall passed away in 2007 his interests were acquired by existing investors to continue the Theo Mission. Interested in selling or using Theo Chocolate at your business? The many phases and faces of the Fremont Trolley Barn, "Jeff Fairhall, 1958-2007: Entrepreneur pioneered healthful food to go -", "Local News | Jeff Fairhall, owner of Essential Baking Co., dies at 49",,, Food and drink companies based in Washington (state), Food and drink companies established in 2006, 2006 establishments in Washington (state), Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 10 October 2020, at 16:50. If you can’t imagine life without chocolate, you’re lucky you weren’t born before the 16th century. Fermented beverages made from chocolate date back to 450 BC. Since Theo Chocolate is a food company, therefore it is regulated by Food and Drug Administration in the United States. Autumn Martin, Erin Holzer, Jessica Lundin, and Pamela Hinckley were all part of the founding team who helped build the company. It was believed to be an aphrodisiac and to give the drinker strength. Candy Industry 171.9 (2006): 18. Interested in selling or using Theo Chocolate at your business? [7], Cengage Learning produced a 6:44-minute BizFlix video case titled "Theo Chocolate", which discusses the firm's fair trade practices and vertical integration.[8]. While providing this business with organic materials and customers, Whinney was able to start saving up to found a chocolate business of his own. Etienne held senior leadership roles at Kraft Foods, Kellogg's and Pharmavite. Learn more Our efforts are validated with rigorous third-party certifications. Join our wholesale program to get access to easy online ordering & wholesale pricing. © Copyright 2020 Theo Chocolate, Inc. We love hearing from fans. We've been making high-quality chocolate from scratch, the hard way, from cocoa bean to chocolate bar, since 2006. He also mentioned his use of magic mushrooms. The Aztecs believed that cacao seeds were the gift of Quetzalcoatl, the god of wisdom, and the seeds once had so much value that they were used as a form of currency. [1], Theo has sourced beans from the Congo, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Madagascar, Peru, and Venezuela. [3], Jeff Fairhall, the founder of Seattle's Essential Baking Company, invested in the establishment of Theo Chocolate with Joe Whinney. We love hearing from fans. Joe was a pioneer in organic cocoa, previously creating the first company to manufacture and supply bulk organic cocoa and chocolate products for the US food industry. Everything we make and sell meets the highest organic and fair-trade standards. We were the first organic, fair trade certified chocolate maker in North America, and we remain committed to pushing the industry forward today. The business is located in the historic Fremont Trolley Barn at 3400 Phinney Avenue. 23 Oct. 2012. The company also sells caramels and specialty items.