Is Fearless Chocolate Organic / Fair Trade / Kosher / Gluten-free / Soy-free / Recycled / a B Corporation / Vegan / Dairy-free / GMO-free?
Why is there a BITE taken from my chocolate?
This distinctive shape tells the story of “BITE BACK” a giving program where Fearless devotes a bite-size portion of our proceeds to changemakers nominated by our very customers. While your Fearless Chocolate bar is in fact a full 2oz chocolate bar, the “bite” shape is designed to express the act of giving and sharing each of our customers participates in by enjoying a Fearless Chocolate bar. Fearless customers are invited to nominate recipients for the annual Fearless “Bite-Back” Grant here on our website.
Rest assured, we do not actually take a bite out from every bar, nor is any chocolate actually missing from the parcel. The bite is simply symbol of our program to give back to those who live fearlessly and support positive change. We hope the very shape of our bar itself continues to make a statement about giving and sharing the experience of chocolate itself – a ritual and practice that is intrinsically connected to the foundational chocolate experiences which inspired us to craft Fearless Chocolate.
Explore the following link to learn more about our Bite Back program, and don’t forget to nominate a changemaker that inspires you:
Is FEARLESS CHOCOLATE Fair Trade?
Fearless Chocolate is crafted exclusively from organic cacao sourced from Fazenda Camboa (www.FazendaCamboa.com), a family-owned farm located in the Mata-Atlantica Rainforest of Bahia, Brazil. Camboa is uniquely specialized in the cultivation of premium and 100% certified organic cacao. As Camboa remains nestled in a region that is yet unserved by Fair Trade organizations, we have taken on the responsibility of transparency and oversight ourselves by working directly with the farmers, making annual visits to participate in quality control, labor relations and community service. The intimate alliance we have developed with Fazenda Camboa is a Direct Trade relationship.
Fair Trade organizations are only recently integrating in areas of the Brazilian agricultural trade. A 2011 collaboration with Fairtrade International and Brazilina labor rights advocates led to the establishment of Assoçiao Brasileira de Comércio Justo, a Brazilian NGO that will eventually offer a national fairtrade label for certified products and producers (www.fairtradebrasil.com). We continue to observe the efforts of Fairtrade Brazil as the organization manages pilot programs with coffee, and fruit producers in the northern and central Brazilian states. It may be many years however before a program exists to certify the socially responsible efforts of our source farm and others in the northeastern regions which remain under-served.
The exclusive relationship between Fearless Chocolate and Fazenda Camboa is the foundation of our commitment to sustainable sourcing. Upholding conditions beyond fair trade standards have become our standard and we are honored to collaborate with the workers who lovingly cultivate our cacao. The Camboa community is as important to us as any aspect of our company and remains indelibly linked with the integrity of Fearless products. We sincerely hope you enjoy tasting the difference.
What is SUPERCHOCOLATE?
Fearless Superchocolate is crafted at low temperature to preserve optimal nutrition. While chocolate is traditionally roasted at temperatures ranging from 250ºF–325ºF, research has shown that the high temperature of the roasting process can critically diminish cacao’s most profound nutritional qualities. With both health and flavor in mind we have evolved our chocolate making process to gently dehydrate our cacao instead of roasting, effectively eliminating moisture without critically affecting the nuances of nutrition or the wonderfully rich, earthy and fruity flavors of our purely raw (unprocessed) cacao.
Many of our customers enjoy Fearless as a delectable chocolate bar made from cacao that is crafted with equal devotion to its wonderful nutritional benefits as well as its fine flavors and sensuous textures. Fearless Chocolate began as handmade process in a home kitchen back in 2006. Over time our process has evolved and our experiences in both research and craft have informed our perception of raw foods and the art of crafting the most delicious and most nutritious chocolate bars.
Experimentation in our manufacturing process has shown that a more nutritious and more delicious chocolate bar can be crafted by limiting the cacao’s exposure to heat. Fearless Chocolate is temperature controlled below 115º during most of its process. While curing at the farm, naturally occurring temperatures during the fermentation cycle can exceed 130ºF playing a critical role in the development of both bioavailable nutrition and optimal flavor. Upon reaching the factory our cacao is briefly exposed to an ambient temperature of up to 160ºF during the final dehydration period prior to shelling and grinding. The result is a Fearless Superchocolate bar that offers exceptional nutrition over chocolate bars forged under the extreme heat of roasting and other conventional methods. Since 2010 we have been collaborating with Brunswick Labs (www.BrunswickLabs.com) to establish a set of traceable lab methods for demonstrating the remarkable nutrition our process yields. Presently we are collecting nutritional data with each production cycle and we look forward to publishing our results. Ongoing lab tests are conducted with Brunswick Labs and we are on track to publishing our methods and findings in a consolidated report by Q2 of 2014.
Is FEARLESS CHOCOLATE raw?
Fearless Chocolate started as a “Raw Chocolate” company in our home kitchen back in 2006 and for more than 7 years we have devoted ourselves to the research and craft of delectable chocolate that retains the extraordinary nutritional wealth of the cacao seed. The founding principles of raw foodism have been our primary inspiration and the pursuit of crafting chocolate within the values and ethics of the raw food philosophy have been our guide. Like many of our peers in the raw food world we have also come to recognize that the inherent complexities of each individual food demand that we as food makers must experiment and explore to find the most optimal conditions for presenting a food’s nutrition and edibility.
The term raw is confusing to many customers. For some, including those unfamiliar with the virtues of a fresh plant-based diet, raw simply means fresh whole food in a generally unprocessed state (ex. baby carrots). For many “raw foodists” however the term raw may indicate a more technical understanding that a prepared food was crafted at or below 118ºF and potentially by way of a variety of food processes (ex. fashioning a “raw carrot cake”). Increasingly however, members of the raw food community are raising concerns over the viability of a 118ºF bench mark.
Two concerns which continue to influence our Fearless food philosophy include:
- Limited amount of public evidence exists to support specific claims that the 118ºF temperature is a consistent and discernable limit whereby the nutritional integrity of a food could be maintained through processing. Some suggest that each food has a heat tolerance specific to its structure and biochemistry; many foods have been shown to breakdown at temperatures far lower than 118ºF while other foods have been shown to endure at temperatures greater than 118ºF.
- Many raw foodists contend that a “raw food” should be more or less a fresh whole food, maintaining a reasonably intact level of cellular activity, and having endured minimal processing from its original state. Some dispute the idea that foods which endure multiple points of process, particularly any level of controlled heat exposure ( ex. chocolate, as well as dehydrated foods), should ever be considered “raw”.
Growing support for Fearless Chocolate bars has enabled us to engage in research and experimentation with on our own cacao since 2010. Our mission is proudly to craft the most favorable conditions for fashioning delicious chocolate bars which retain the integrity of cacao’s extraordinary nutrition. We are happy to share that our findings have influenced the most critical factors of our manufacturing process which impact the nutrition and flavor of cacao, specifically the methods and practices for the fermentation, drying and grinding of cacao. Experimentation with our own cacao has shown that 118ºF is not a benchmark that favorably applies to processing our cacao for its optimal bioavailable nutrition or its ideal flavor.
Each food ingredient is its own miracle of complexity and therefore we believe each food may require its own specific conditions for ideal processing and consumption where nutrition is concerned. Cacao is our focus, and we are constantly working to evolve our methods and process for crafting the most delicious and most nutritious chocolate. We recognize that our current process for crafting Fearless Chocolate may challenge beliefs that are core to some raw chocolate lover’s conceptions of the raw food philosophy. For this reason we have removed the word “raw” from our branding and packaging until a peer reviewed process can be established for maintaining a raw standard that recognizes the nuances between categories of food and food processing. Foods that we believe may benefit from individualized standards include raw whole foods (ex. fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds) , raw dehydrated foods (ex. kale chips, macaroons, fruit leather, food bars), raw unpasteurized juices and smoothies, and of course, raw cacao and raw cacao-based confections such as chocolate bars.
UPDATE: A process for establishing a set of raw food standards has launched with the support of the Raw Alliance (www.rawalliance.com). More info coming soon.
Why are some flavors sweeter than others? What does the percentage mean?
With two exceptions (75% Dark as Midnight & 85% Deepest Dark), all of our bars are crafted from the 70% chocolate. Each 70% bar contains an equal 70/30 ratio of chocolate/sugar. For some the experience of sweetness is further enhanced by the presence of ingredients used in each distinct recipe.
Why isn’t FEARLESS CHOCOLATE made with AGAVE?
To explore why Fearless Chocolate is never made with Agave please review our Agave Report. For further reading we also recommend article published in 2010 by the Glycemic Research Institute explaining why Agave was removed and banned from its list of acceptable food ingredients for diabetic patients:
I bought my chocolate in a store, and when I opened it up, it looked weird / melted / chalky / etc. Can I have a refund?
Once Fearless Chocolate bars leave our production floor they become the property of the distributors and the retailers who provided them for your purchase. Unfortunately, Fearless can ONLY replace or refund damaged chocolate bars purchased directly from our website.
If you purchased a damaged Fearless Chocolate bar here’s what you can do:
- Return the damaged bar with your receipt to the place of purchase. Your retail store should be able to replace or refund without question.
- Contact us M – F from 10am – 5pm on our customer service line (888-356-4527). We are here to help you get the best of your Fearless Chocolate experience, please let us know where your damaged bar was purchased and we can reach out to ensure you are extended the best customer service experience possible.
Please note that most damaged chocolate bars have simply been exposed to melt-inducing heat. Chocolate bars stored at improperly high temperature are susceptible to “bloom”, a circumstance where the chocolate has melted enough to induce separation between the dark cocoa solids and the white cocoa butter. Cocoa butter can melt to the surface of the bar creating a noticeably white/grey and perhaps chalky exterior. Sugar bloom can also occur where the sugars separate and create a sticky film on the exterior of the bar. Its important to note that bloom affects the visual and tactile aesthetics of the bar only. Bloomed chocolate is safe to eat and will taste the same as a non-bloomed chocolate bar.
Ultimately chocolate is fashioned to exists in a delicate state just barely more stable than melting. The natural heat of your mouth is in fact an ideal temperature to disrupt chocolate’s provisional architecture which is also what makes it such an exquisite eating experience as the chocolate relents its crystalline math of cacao fats, solds, and sugars and submits to your eager taste buds. Yet the chocolate will equally melt under the heat of the sun, a delivery truck, a stock room or a generally hot day. Simply put, chocolate requires delicate care.
We love your packaging. What is it made of?
The paper we use is a humble chipboard made of 100% Post Consumer waste which can be found via almost any paper distributor. Most sustainable printers should have access to it!
Do any of your chocolate bars contain Dairy?
None of our chocolate bars contain dairy-based ingredients (also no gluten, soy, or tree nuts). We do however process our chocolate in a facility that handles other products which may contain these ingredients. However, Fearless Chocolate is an Organic Certified product line and part of our obligation to maintaining organic standards involves adherence to strict standards regarding the cleansing of our manufacturing equipment between production cycles. These procedures are specifically designed to eliminate the possibility of contamination by food allergens such as dairy, wheat, soy and nuts. Furthermore we frequently engage independent labs to test our products for allergens. Testing affirms that the likelihood of dairy contamination within our chocolate is immeasurably low.
Where’s the best place to store my FEARLESS CHOCOLATE, especially during the warm summer months?
Chocolate is best kept in a cool dry place between 55ºF – 65ºF, away from sunlight and away from moisture. Your chocolate will begin to melt at temperatures of 74ºF and above, therefore any environment that can be temperature controlled below 74ºF is acceptable (your average pantry cabinet could suffice). Chocolate can also be stored in a refrigerator or freezer, however take steps to prevent exposure to moisture — especially when the bar is removed from the cold environment and condensation is likely to occur — by keeping your chocolate stored in it’s original sealed package or in an air-tight, sealed container after the package is opened.
Please contact us with any further questions.