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Nelson Company Wins Gold at Academy of Chocolate Awards

Nelson company Hogarth Craft Chocolate has scored what is believed to be a first for NZ-made chocolate, winning a gold award in the flavoured dark chocolate bar section of the 2017 Academy of Chocolate Awards.

This year’s awards attracted almost double the amount of entries as 2016, with more than 600 entries submitted for judging in the chocolate bar categories alone. Awards are given based on several rounds of blind tasting by Academy of Chocolate members, and a panel of international experts in food and chocolate. Chocolate is judged on a range of criteria including its appearance, depth of aroma, flavour and complexity.

Hogarth won gold in the Flavoured Dark Chocolate Bar category for its Dark Hazelnut Gianduia bar, one of only six gold award winners in that category. Hogarth also received silver in the Dark Bean to Bar Under 80% Cocoa Solids category for both its Acul du Nord Haiti and Gran Blanco Peru bars.

The Academy of Chocolate was founded in 2005 by five of Britain’s leading chocolate professionals, united in the belief that eating fine chocolate is one of life’s great pleasures and the desire to promote a greater awareness of the difference between fine chocolate and mass-produced chocolate confectionery.

“We were delighted to receive the news of our success,” says Marina Hogarth, “especially when we realised that all three of the chocolate bars we had entered had won awards.”

“It’s great to be putting New Zealand-made chocolate on the map internationally,” says Karl Hogarth. “Judging by the number of entries this year, it’s clear that there is huge growth in the craft chocolate market both here and globally. We’re particularly excited that our Gianduia chocolate uses a special variety of hazelnuts grown in Nelson.”

Hogarth has experienced stellar success since it was first sold at a stall at the Nelson Saturday Market in early 2015. In addition to maintaining its connection with the Nelson market Hogarth Craft Chocolate is now distributed around New Zealand and is exported to the UK, US, Paris, Hong Kong, Japan, and Australia. The company’s annual turnover has doubled in the last year and is expected to continue to increase as more lovers of beautiful bean-to-bar chocolate discover Hogarth Craft Chocolate.

“It’s so satisfying to see people tasting and enjoying our chocolate,” says Karl, “and it shows that New Zealanders are ready to embrace high-quality chocolate.”

The annual Academy of Chocolate Awards is open to entries from all around the world, and this year’s ceremony will be presented at Claridge’s in London in July 2017. Special Award winners will be announced at that event.


About Hogarth Craft Chocolate:

Marina and Karl Hogarth started their business prompted by a shared passion for chocolate making and boosted by a very enthusiastic reception for the chocolate bars that they initially made in their shed at home. After setting up a certified kitchen that allowed them to sell their chocolate at Nelson’s iconic Saturday Market in 2015, Karl left his career at sea and the couple both worked in their business fulltime. Less than a year later, they launched their retail brand Hogarth Craft Chocolate which is now winning international awards, is being sold in the UK, Paris, USA, Hong Kong, Japan, and Australia and is sought after by some of New Zealand’s finest chefs (including Simon Gault and Josh Emett).

Karl and Marina craft their chocolate from single-origin raw cacao beans through to the finished tablet. The cacao beans are purchased via direct trade with suppliers, ensuring that all Hogarth Chocolate is ethically sourced. Each Hogarth Craft Chocolate product has a different level of pure cacao and a distinctive flavour reflecting its origins.

For more information go to

About the Academy of Chocolate:

The Academy of Chocolate aims to encourage chocolate lovers to look ‘beyond the label’ to differentiate between chocolate confectionery and ‘real’ chocolate. It also places a strong emphasis on promoting understanding of the ingredients of chocolate through the chain, from bean to bar and encourages sourcing cocoa beans from plantations and the production of chocolate in way that is socially fair and does not damage the environment.

For more information about the Academy of Chocolate and its awards go to


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