The level of chocolate sales has reached last year’s level. The Food and Drink Industries Federation estimates that the total volume of chocolate and chocolate products sold in 2013 will amount to around 16 million kilos. With sweets, chewing gum and other confectionery added into the mix, that total becomes 62 million kilos.
Although the chocolate and confectionery supply has diversified in recent years, Finnish Christmas best-sellers remain the same, according to the President of Finland’s Chocolate Society, Jarkko Karhunen.
“As far as I’m aware it’s still the case that Panda, Fazer and Marabou are the most popular sellers, synonymous with Christmas,” Karhunen says.
Founded in 2005, one of the Chocolate Society’s goals is to promote awareness of chocolate.
Although the Finns are still filling their baskets with well-known brands, Karhunen says interest in small chocolatiers is on the rise. Among the new products on shop shelves is an increasing amount of raw chocolate.
“I myself am not at all interested in the idea of raw chocolate as a health food,” Karhunen points out, however. “Chocolate is a stimulant, and when it becomes a health food that’s when all the goodness usually disappears out of the experience of eating it. The point is material enjoyment,” he says.