After what has been a pretty lean 2020 for chocolate bar orders, due to reasons that we all understand yet could not control, 2021 has started with a bang!
This week we received 3 orders from 3 significant channels and 3 different countries.
Japan, the US, and Panama.
It didn’t happen overnight, though.
During 2020 our team spent a lot of time (12 hour Zoom days!) re-designing our packaging, analyzing our marketing strategy, and building the necessary relationships in those markets.
Coffee and Chocolate can be sold anywhere in the world. So, where are the best markets, with the best partners, for us?
Our home markets of Panama and Belize are a given, and we have established relationships with the best distributors and top supermarket chains to work with. In Belize, pre-COVID, we were selling 15,000 bars a month through a distribution channel that took 2 years to establish.
Now in Panama, our Mahogany Chocolate bars have been accepted into Riba Smith, the no.1 high-end supermarket chain in the country, with the first trial order placed and shipped this week.
Many of you reading this have ordered our delicious Belizean range of chocolate bars and chocolate powdered drink on Amazon.
Amazon has been an exciting channel to develop for us, as it allows for local US delivery at an affordable price for our clients, potential customers, and investors. Our clients love ordering chocolate from their farms and having it delivered to family members. How cool is that?
To establish this channel, we have been working with a US-based client of ours, who happens to own multiple coffee and cacao farm parcels, and it has been a slow and tedious process to get traction. Small orders of a few hundred bars were air shipped from Belize, with little or no profit for either side due to the high shipping cost of small volumes. However, it was a necessary marketing expense and part of establishing a foothold in that online market.
With enough traction built up, we are ready to ship our 1st significant order by sea!
On Thursday, February 18th, several pallets of the complete range of Mahogany Chocolate Belizean bars, Chocol’ha powdered drink, and other assorted products will be loaded up at the Punta Gorda factory and shipped to the US.
Shipping by sea drastically reduces the costs.
When the container arrives in the US, we will provide you all with the necessary links to purchase and sample the bars on Amazon and Shopify.
Now, we said 3 orders and 3 countries, so what about Japan?
We will have more on that in our next update.
Stay tuned for the most exciting news that we have had for a long time and a significant step in establishing a real foothold in a solid channel to a very lucrative market.