CHOCOLATIERS! THESE GHANIAN SISTERS ARE FEEDING THE WORLD MADE IN AFRICA CHOCOLATE
Ghanian sisters, Kimberly and Priscilla Addison have sought to feed the world with the goodness of African chocolate. They are the dedicatee hands behind ’57 Chocolate, the pioneer artisanal bean to bar chocolate manufacturer in Ghana defined by creativity and luxury. The name ‘57 is short for 1957—the year of Ghana’s independence. 1957 was a revolutionary year for the country, not only because it became an independent country, but it was the year that gave birth to the nation’s “can do spirit.”
‘57 Chocolate aims to inspire the people of Ghana, especially the youth to create and develop made in Ghana products of the highest value.
Having spent time living in Geneva, Switzerland, they thought it was strange that Switzerland was known for its chocolate, but yet doesn’t grow cocoa, the core ingredient in chocolate. Meanwhile, Ghana is the second largest producer of cocoa but produces very little chocolate itself. They saw a vast need for manufacturing chocolate in Ghana and across the continent of Africa. In Ghana, the candy shelves of supermarkets and malls are overflowing with foreign chocolate bars, many undoubtedly made with Ghana’s very own cocoa. Having recognized all of this, they were determined to use Ghanaian cocoa to create high-quality African chocolate brand that is reputable locally, internationally, and can compete on the world market.
At ‘57 Chocolate, dry cocoa beans are processed into luxurious chocolate and confections. Most importantly, their chocolate is handmade in small batches, rich in cocoa, and made without any artificial flavours, colours or preservatives. As part of the process of ensuring that the chocolate is of high quality, cocoa is always the first and main ingredient in their dark and milk chocolates, as opposed to sugar which is listed first in many other brands. Their chocolate challenges the status quo of luxury chocolate being only a product of Europe. What’s most unique about their business is that they produce chocolate that is a reflection of Ghanaian art and culture, particularly through their Adinkra bars. These bite-sized bars are beautifully engraved with symbols, with each symbol having a unique meaning.
Currently, their 5 signature flavours are 73 percent dark chocolate, 55 percent milk, white, mocha latte (coffee flavor) and bissap (hibiscus flavor). Other services they provide include customized chocolate favors for social and corporate events and chocolate pairings/tastings for groups.
They have entrepreneurial roots. They admit ” Our grandparents owned businesses and our mom started her own business in Ghana when she was just 18 years old.”
Kimberly Addison, Co-Founder of ‘57 Chocolate is a graduate of Boston College’s arts and sciences program located in the United States. At Boston College, she obtained a Bachelors of Arts in French and International Studies, with a concentration in Social Justice. At ’57 Chocolate she oversees production, quality control, and leads recipe development.
Priscilla Addison, Co-Founder ‘57 Chocolate is a graduate of New York University’s (NYU) Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service, where she obtained a Master’s in Public Administration (MPA) with a specialization in International Development. Not only does she serve as co-chef, she brings her marketing and communications expertise to this venture.