Ever thought about the amount of trash we are generating while consuming a chocolate bar, biscuit or chips? These packaged single-use plastic wrappers, when disposed of, reach the landfills and generate unimaginable amounts of carbon footprint.
However, L Nitin Chordia with his chocolate brand called Cocoatrait, brings a solution to those guilt pangs without having to compromise on tasty fine chocolate.
Having started his journey with chocolates while working for Godrej’s Nature’s Basket, Nitin noticed how there was growing demand for high-quality chocolates but to his surprise, Indian chocolates didn’t meet the requirements. This thought led Nitin to Chocolate-tasting certification course in the UK after which he made a smaller chocolate production setup in his hometown, Chennai.
“With the outlook of machinery used in the production of chocolates in foreign countries, we started developing machinery required for small-scale production. We adopted certain equipment that we have been using for decades in India for the process of chocolate-making. For example, a similar concept to the idli grinder we use at households can be used to make luxurious chocolates at a mini set up,” explains Nitin who came up with similar innovative ideas for machinery used for the seven processes in the making of chocolates.
With a thought of turning this acquired skill into a business, Nitin along with his wife Poonam formulated Cocoashala where they offered bean to bar chocolate-making and taster certification courses. Soon, with the motivation from a few of their Indian students, the duo spearheaded Cocoatrait (https://cocoatrait.com/), the first completely zero-waste chocolate company in the world. From chocolate wrapping to the external packaging, Cocoatrait uses all eco-friendly products.
“The bars are first wrapped in a plastic-free aluminium foil. Then they are placed in a sustainable box which is paperless and is made from the cotton that is mixed with the husk of the cocoa beans from the roasting process. The wrappers also have an added element to reuse them even after opening. The inside of the wrapper has printed mandala designs which can be used as bookmarks. Also, there is a QR code printed which will lead you to six ways to reuse the aluminium foil,” explains Nitin.
“Even the outer packaging, we use a paper alternative to plastic bubble wrap and paper-based tape which has starch as the glue to seal the package,” he adds. The packaging is printed by a company which employs the differently-abled.
Since its launch in October 2019, Cocoatrait has saved around 50 kilos of single-use plastic used by other chocolate brands.
While the chocolates are made from organic cocoa beans of Indian origin, they also are vegan and gluten-free. Made along with non-refined organic Khandsari sugar, Cocoatrait offers a range of 12 natural flavours which includes Masala Chai, Chukka Coffee (Tamilian style), Lavender, Banana, Lemongrass, Red rose and Pink rose.
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