The word chocolate brings up an appealing image of candy bars, delectable truffles, but the chocolate of today is unlike the past. Earlier it was revered as a bitter beverage rather than a sweet treat. Around 1500 B.C. Olmec’s used cacao trees to prepare ceremonial drinks. Later, American Mayans used chocolate drinks in celebrations and to finalize important deals. Chocolate was more like a staple for them, and not meant for the rich. They often mixed chili peppers, honey, or water into chocolate that was thick and frothy. Then came the Aztecs, who used chocolate as a means of currency to exchange for food or some other goods.
Chocolate first came in Florida in 1641, and its first American Chocolate house opened in Boston in 1682. Chocolate was a major import enjoyed by American’s by 1773. In World War 2, it was given to soldiers as a ration.
The North American region has witnessed an increase in preference for the premium chocolate range, along with a growth in sales of low caloric chocolates, sugar-free chocolates, healthy chocolate bars, and chocolate gift boxes. The medical benefits and varied interesting flavours are significant drivers in the market. Also, creative bundling and packaging act as an additional factor when it comes to purchasing of chocolate for gifting purpose. As the top-notch segment of premium chocolates are expanding, the door for innovations in the product variants and flavors are now wide open for marketers.
According to the report "North America Chocolate Market Outlook, 2026" published by Bonafide Research, the market have grown historically with the CAGR of around 3.22% till the year 2020. The United States is the highest revenue generator with about 73% market share in North America Chocolate Market. Mexican Chocolate Market is anticipated to grow with the highest CAGR in the forecast year 2026. Hershey’s, Reese’s, Snickers, Kit Kat, Twix, 3 Musketeers, Milky Way are some of the most adored chocolates by North Americans. On average 9.5lbs of chocolate is consumed per person in North America. Chocolates are highly demanded during Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, Halloween, Valentine’s Day, and other such special occasions in North America. North America Chocolate Market by product is segmented into Milk Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, and White Chocolate. Though Milk chocolate dominates the market share, health concerns are a driving force to shift the preference towards Dark Chocolate.
As the buying pattern of customers towards chocolate is not explicit in nature, the point of display and attractive packaging have an important role in the upward movement of the sales graph, along with new advancements in flavors. Irrespective of age, the love chocolates force people to make an impulse purchase and indulge in the confectionery. Festivals and celebrations are a major situational factor that pushes the market to rise. Celebratory occasions of Halloween, Christmas, & New Year have proved to provoke the demand for chocolates as a better option for gifts.