There are plenty of sections at Whole Foods that hold a special place in my heart — the wall of LaCroix cases in all their sparkling glory, the DIY nut butter section, and of course the craft beer aisle — but there's only one wall at Whole Foods that I can never just cruise by without stopping at. Can you relate?
The chocolate wall at Whole Foods can only be described as pure magic. I can't walk past this aisle without taking a second to see what's new (and there's always something new). Sure, other grocery stores also have a chocolate section, but Whole Foods goes above and beyond in its immense curation of delicious chocolate bars.
"Customers can expect anywhere from 75 to 120 unique items in a four-foot aisle," explains David Lafferty, global grocery buyer for Whole Foods.
The chocolate buyers for Whole Foods (what a fun job!) look for fair-trade ingredients, and no artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, or sweeteners. The buyers also "pay attention to trends and listen to what customers are asking for as well. Beyond just great-tasting, indulgent treats, some shoppers may also be looking for super-food content and benefits, or distinctive additions to their chocolate," says Lafferty.
Whole Foods chocolate buyers also make a concentrated effort to seek out bars that are unique and local to the store they are being sold in. "Whole Foods Market has always had a commitment to supporting local producers in all categories," says Lafferty. "We're always looking for innovative brands that meet our quality standards and share our core values, which ultimately provides a great selection for our shoppers."
Happy chocolate shopping, my friends.
Does the chocolate wall at Whole Foods hold a special place in your heart? Have you discovered a new favorite chocolate bar recently? Let us know in the comments.