With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, latest research from Mintel finds that there’s a whole world of new chocolates out there, that will put that last minute box from your local garage to shame.
Indeed, according to the Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD) over 8,000 new chocolate products were introduced worldwide last year, meaning that a new chocolatey treat was launched almost every hour of every day in 2008. Far from being an unhealthy option, th e Mintel GNPD team has identified chocolates that claim to clear up your acne, help your digestion or even improve your teeth.
“New product launches in the chocolate market continue to grow and companies are becoming ever more imaginative, with solutions that are designed to offer more than just the standard box,” comments David Jago, Director of trends and innovation at Mintel.
“For years, we have known that chocolates with a high cocoa content are rich in anti-oxidants. But today there are more reasons than ever to indulge as so many chocolates now have added benefits over and above this naturally occurring goodness,”he adds.
What is more, in the past three years alone the number of new chocolate launches globally has increased by a mouth-watering 32%.  Things have never looked better for chocolate-loving romantics the world over.
Here is a selection of new chocolates launched last year:
A brighter smile for those with a sweet toothNormally a sweet snack before bedtime is a no go. But in Japan, Healthcare 21 Pk launched Xyli Power Chocolate, a heart-shaped tooth-friendly chocolate, designed to be eaten just before bed. The chocolate was created by dentists and is said to prevent the growth of plaque-causing bacteria, so helping strengthen our teeth while we sleep.
Chocolate – it’s clever stuffBrainpower has never been tastier. Beryl’s Chocolate & Confectionery launched Audrey’s Dark Chocolate=2 0& Strawberry bar in Taiwan. Enriched with omega 3 and Brainy DHA, it is said to improve heart and brain health. The Brainy DHA is added to take away the fishy taste and smell that is often associated with other omega 3 enriched products.
Ditch the lettuceIn Japan, Lotte reformulated its Zero branded sugar-free chocolate to have plenty of dietary fibre. The company claims that in terms of dietary fibre their chocolate is the equivalent of eating three lettuces.
Chocolate gets the all clearIn the USA, Frutels Acne is a premium, all-natural dark chocolate, which is said to deliver powerful anti-oxidants and micro-nutrients to support the body’s defences against the causes of acne to clarify the skin from the inside out.
Chocolate with a kickConfiseur Laderach in the Czech Republic has launched a curry, coconut & banana white chocolate. The spiciness of the curry is said to offset the extra sweetness of the white chocolate, while the fruit flavours add a touch of the exotic.
Chocolate – it’s salt of the earthSalt + Choco Milk Chocolates by Meiji Seika Kaisha in Japan are individually wrapped milk chocolate pieces containing crunchy salted candy, that are made with roasted salt from Okinawa.And finally for those who may not have a Valentine’s this year, all is not lost as there is Bloomberry & Co’s Emergency Chocolate. Packaged to look like medicin e, the product says on the front: For immediate relief of chocolate cravings, exam pressure, mild anxiety and more importantly at this time of year, lovesickness.

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