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Browsing articles by " Monica Erskine"
Nov
13

Three Holiday Bars to Unwrap

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Yes, yes, yes! The Holiday Bars are here! And with their arrival comes a conundrum – which one to try first. They’re only around for a limited time so there’s no time to dilly dally. Luckily, we’re here to help. To discover which one we think you should unwrap first, pick a word below that best sums up your feelings about the holiday season!

 

Cozy

-Dark Chocolate with Vanilla Chai-

Curl up in your favorite spot with a warm beverage and savor bite after delicious bite of dark chocolate blended with a mixture of warm, holiday spices. A perfect way to set the mood for contemplating the meaning of the season.

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Festive

-Dark Chocolate with Peppermint Crunch-

The burst of peppermint aroma and delightfully crunchy cocoa nibs will instantly put you in the holiday spirit and give you an energetic boost to tackle your holiday to-do list!

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Traditions

-Dark Chocolate with Pumpkin Spice & Almonds-

It’s a flavor that sends a signal to your brain that the holidays are here! Nibble a bar while you plan a month’s worth of epic events that spread good cheer and enhance everyone’s holiday celebration.

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Sep
2

3 Chocolate Storage Tips

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Good chocolate usually doesn’t sit around long…but when it does, protect your stash from chocolate’s three main enemies: heat, humidity, and odors.

Store your chocolate bars between about 60 and 65°F (about 16 – 18°C).  Heat and/or direct sunlight can slowly deteriorate chocolate’s aroma, flavor and texture. Consider a cool closet, dry basement or wine cooler to shelf your stash.

Store chocolate in a dry place.   Ideally, the relative humidity should be below 50%.  Excess moisture can condense on the bar and draw out the sugar onto the surface, causing unsightly bloom (harmless but disturbs the silky texture of fine chocolate).

Avoid strong odors.  Chocolate absorbs strong odors like a sponge.  Store your chocolate away from aromatics like coffee or garlic. Also keep flavored bars such as our Rainforest Mint or Espresso Bean bars separate from your plain chocolate and everything will taste as it should.

 

May
22

Lemur Lovin’

lemurblog_22614Guest post submitted by Catherine Olteanu, Lemur Conservation Foundation.

Sobe and Sassy, meet Molson!

Two ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta) breeding pairs are among the eight approved breeding pairs for Lemur Conservation Foundation‘s colony this year.

One of our male ring-tailed lemurs, Molson, has a recommendation to breed with both Sobe and her twin sister Sarsaparilla (aka Sassy), two new additions at Lemur Conservation Foundation (LCF). Sobe and Sassy arrived in the fall of 2013 from Duke Lemur Center as part of the Ring-tailed Lemur Species Survival Plan (SSP). The SSP makes recommendations that maintain optimal populations in captive breeding programs.

Sobe, Sassy and Molson spent some time in our enclosures before being released into the forests together. You can watch them enter the forest for the first time in this video.

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A Model Mother

Ansell with her twins

Ansell with her twins

Another pair of ring-tailed lemurs at LCF, Yuengling and Ansell, have been a recommended breeding pair for a few years. Ansell has already given birth to multiple, healthy offspring including a pair of female twins born in April 2013.

All of Ansell’s infants were born in LCF’s forests. She is an experienced mother that raised her offspring in the forests while also leading her troop, much like she would do in Madagascar – the only place in the world where lemurs live in the wild.

This chart shows the North American peak breeding and birth times for lemur pairs at Lemur Conservation Foundation.

 

 


SPECIES PEAK BREEDING SEASON PEAK BIRTH SEASON
Ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta) Oct-Dec Mar-May
Red ruffed lemur (Varecia rubra) Jan-Feb Apr-May
Collared lemur (Eulemur collaris) Nov-Jan Mar-May
Mongoose lemur (Eulemur mongoz) Nov-Feb Mar-June

 

The Lemur Conservation Foundation

The Lemur Conservation Foundation, a 200 acre private reserve located in Myakka City, Florida, holds six species of lemurs, including ring-tails. Our free ranging colony lives in native forests in multi species groups much like they do in Madagascar.  We are dedicated to the conservation and preservation of lemurs through captive breeding, education, art, observation based research, and partnerships.  LCF is a managing member of The Madagascar Fauna Group and two species survival plans, including the SSP for lemur catta.

Apr
21

Chocolate Bar at Work

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Friday, May 16th is Endangered Species Day – a day to recognize conservation efforts to save at-risk species and habitats. Let’s celebrate the fact that over the past three years, you’ve helped us raise over $855,000 for conservation groups!  Take a closer look at specific programs your Endangered Species Chocolate purchases and our 10% Promise are funding.

ESC Day AWF

 Partner: African Wildlife Foundation | Program: African Apes Initiative

“Endangered Species Chocolate’s 10% GiveBack program is making a demonstrable difference in helping AWF to conserve the natural resources and heritage that are vital to Africa’s environmental and economic prosperity.” – Kurt Redenbo, Director, Foundation & Corporate Relations, African Wildlife Foundation

Africa is home to 4 of the world’s 5 great ape species. Unfortunately, all 4 are endangered or critically endangered. Through the newly launched African Apes Initiative, AWF works throughout West and Central Africa to protect great apes and their habitats.

  • AWF prioritizes those great ape habitats most in need of conservation intervention;
  • They work with park authorities and other on-the-ground partners to identify gaps in local conservation support;
  • This program provides seed grants and technical support for critical interventions;
  • AWF implements long term conservation strategies. Learn much more here.

ESC Day Xerces Bee

Partner: The Xerces Society | Program: Bumble Bee Watch

“[Endangered Species Chocolate's 10% donation] allows us to expand our work to protect pollinators in all landscapes across the U.S.” – Scott Black, Executive Director, The Xerces Society

Bumble Bee Watch is a collaborative effort to track and conserve North America’s bumble bees. This citizen science project allows for individuals to:

  • Upload photos of bumble bees to start a virtual bumble bee collection;
  • Identify the bumble bees in your photos and have your identifications verified by experts;
  • Help researchers determine the status and conservation needs of bumble bees;
  • Learn about bumble bees, their ecology, and ongoing conservation efforts; and
  • Connect with other citizen scientists.

ESC Day SEETurtles

 Partner: SEE Turtles | Program: Billion Baby Turtles

“Over the past 3 years, Endangered Species Chocolate grew to be the single largest supporter of SEE Turtles and SEEtheWILD, support that has been critical to the success of our programs.” – SEE Turtles 10% Promise Report

6 out of 7 species of sea turtles around the world are endangered or threatened. SEE Turtle program, Billion Baby Turtles,  is helping reverse this decline by saving one billion baby turtles over the next decade. For every $1 raised, SEE Turtles saves at least 1 hatchling. Funds support vital nesting beach patrols across Latin America:

  • Eastern Pacific Hawksbill Initiative
  • Las Tortugas Research Station
  • Paso Pacifico
  • WILDCAST Costa Rica
  • Cuba Marine Research & Conservation
  • Flora, Fauna y Cultura

Be sure to join us on Facebook, May 12-16 2014, for a chocolate giveaway to celebrate Endangered Species Day! “Like” our 10% GiveBack Partners, XXX, XXX, XXX for additional opportunities to win.

Jan
15

Chocolate Holidays

blog_feature_dec13It’s really no surprise that each and every month has a day dedicated to chocolate. Check out this list of national chocolate food holidays - links within our calendar take you to interesting ways to celebrate (My fav? Dec 16th – Eleven Seriously Weird Chocolate-Covered Foods) or send you to the perfect Endangered Species Chocolate item to indulge in for the day!

 

 

January 3

National Chocolate-Covered Cherry Day

January 10

National Bittersweet Chocolate Day

january 27

National Chocolate Cake Day

february 1

National Dark Chocolate Day

February 5

National Chocolate Fondue Day

February 19

National Chocolate Mint Day

February 25

National Chocolate-Covered Nuts Day

march 19

National Chocolate Caramel Day

March 24

National Chocolate-Covered Raisins Day

April 21

National Chocolate-Covered Cashews Day

May 15

National Chocolate Chip Day

June 7

National Chocolate Ice Cream Day

June 26

National Chocolate Pudding Day

July 28

National Milk Chocolate Day

August 4

National Chocolate Chip Day

August 10

National S’Mores Day

september 12

National Chocolate Milkshake Day

september 13

International Chocolate Day

september 22

National White Chocolate Day

October 28

National Chocolate Day

November 7

National Bittersweet Chocolate with Almonds Day

December 16

National Chocolate-Covered Anything Day

December 28

National Chocolate Day

 

Dec
4

To: Nature | From: You

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Why not put the planet on your gift-giving list this season? Here are 3 conservation organizations we know and trust to fight for at-risk species and habitats!

Send support to the sea

SEETurtle Holiday Gift Pack

Make a year-end $110.00 donation to SEE Turtles and receive a gift bag filled with ocean-friendly loot to commemorate your generosity!

SEE Turtles supports community-based sea turtle conservation projects worldwide. Your donation will help protect 100 baby turtle hatchlings.

The ULTIMATE TURTLE LOVERS’ GIFT PACK includes:

  • 3 Endangered Species Chocolate bars
  • 18oz. Klean Kanteen bottle
  • Organic goat milk soap ‘Cause Bar’
  • Sea turtle garden flag
  • Koteli reusable shopping bag
  • Glass Dharma glass drinking straw
  • 3 baby sea turtle postcards

Get your gift that gives back direct from SEE Turtles and The Ocean Foundation.

For the bees (and other pollinators)…

xercesOur 10% GiveBack Partner, The Xerces Society, is at the forefront of invertebrate protection worldwide, harnessing the knowledge of scientists to implement conservation programs.

Join The Xerces Society in combating unnecessary pesticide use and advocating for pollinators. Make a year-end donation to The Xerces Society – you’ll receive a bi-annual subscription to Wings: Essays on Invertebrate Conservation to keep you informed of your donation at work!

Go in on a joint gift with Betty White!

AWF_Holiday_Donation_Isolated.jpg

Elephants have a secret weapon against poachers – Betty White! Join the Golden Girl in a quest to protect African wildlife by making a donation to our 10% GiveBack Partner, African Wildlife Foundation. Ms. White will double your gift when you give before December 20th.

Act now and double AWF’s resources to fight to save Africa’s rare and precious wildlife! With your donation you’ll receive

  • 16-month calendar with stunning African wildlife photography
  • AWF’s quarterly newsletter
  • The pride that you are making a difference for Africa’s wildlife, wild lands and community.

Chocolate Gifts Supporting Species

Want to combine a charitable donation with indulgent chocolate? We can help with that!

Pick one of our AWFliongiftAWF ADOPTION CHOCOLATE COLLECTIONS.

African Wildlife Foundation works to support 80+ species every day. We’ve paired their purpose with Endangered Species Chocolate bars for gifts that give back in a big way.

Your AWF Adoption Collection purchases send a $15, $25 or $40 donation to African Wildlife Foundation and gives you a delicious chocolate assortment, cute plush animal, and a 1-year AWF e-membership – all wrapped up in a great gift box.

 

SAVE THE SEA TURTLES GIFT PACK
Save sea turtles and savor chocolate! With this purchase, a $10 donation is made to SEE Turtles, a conservation tourism project that supports seeturtle giftcommunity-based sea turtle protection efforts.

Your purchase supports work in Costa Rica, Baja California Sur and Trinidad – vital nesting habitats for endangered sea turtles. Each pack bundles three 3oz. Natural Dark Chocolate with Blueberries chocolate bars with a card acknowledging your SEE Turtles donation.

What a sweet gift (that gives back)!

 

 


Oct
3

GMO Impact on Wildlife

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October is Non-GMO Month – a great time to mull over myths and truths about genetically modified organisms so you can make an informed choice…for your health and the health of the planet. What are the impacts of GMOs on the environment? Over 80% of all GMOs are engineered for herbicide tolerance. As a result, use of herbicides has increased 15x since GMOs were introduced – herbicides that persist in the environment and harm wildlife. There are also GMO crops that produce a Bt toxin insecticide which may harm non-target insect populations such as butterflies and beneficial pest predators. The long-term inpact of GMOs are unknown, and once released into the environment these engineered organisms cannot be recalled.

We believer Mother Nature knows best. That’s why we source Non-GMO Project Verified ingredients for our chocolate. Look for in-store displays during October and celebrate your right to make an informed choice about the foods you eat.

-Sources: Non-GMO Project | Learn More , GMO Myths and Truths, and Non-GMO Project Communications Toolkit

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Look for our Non-GMO Project Verified Natural Chocolate Halloween Treats on store shelves in October!

And find Endangered Species Chocolate in store displays throughout Non-GMO Month

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Aug
20

Purse with a Purpose

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What do you do with the overstock of obsolete chocolate bar wrappers? When you’re an eco-minded company, you seek out ways to reuse them. While we keep our inventory tight to avoid waste, rare changes like ingredient updates, discontinuations, and design revisions leave us with wrappers to re-purpose. Some, we shred and use as recyclable packing material in our chocolate shipments. Others, we hand over to Ecoist to make into pretty purses full of purpose!

Ecoist handbags are made through a fair trade manufacturing partnership with artisans in Peru. Fair Trade is a manufacturing partnership that embraces: 1) fair wages to workers, 2) healthy working environments, 3) long term relationships with suppliers, and 4) respect for the local cultural identity. See how the artisans turn pre-consumer waste into environmentally conscious style And icing on the cake – Ecoist plants a tree for each purse sold!

Enter to win one of 64 Ecoist purses, handcrafted from Endangered Species Chocolate bar wrappers!  Add your name to our e-card list between August 5th – September 27th for a chance to win.

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Jul
22

Throw a S’Mores Soiree

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I love spending time with my friends but I hate planning parties. That, in a nutshell, is why throwing a S’more shindig is perfect for people like me. This easy-to-assemble party spread provides the food AND the entertainment, leaving little for the host to do but to join in the fun! And if Pinterest has taught me anything, it’s to mimic great ideas.  Below are photos from my co-worker’s backyard S’more feast. Feel free to glean ideas for your own backyard bash!

THE PERFECT(LY EASY) S’MORE SOIREE

SmoreSpread

The key to a successful S’more soiree? A well-stocked ingredient table and a well-tended fire pit. Need a great graham? Look for Annie’s Organic Graham Crackers! Make it vegan with dark chocolate and this recipe!

SmoreGrahamsChocolatePlate

Elevate the experience by offering an assortment of premium chocolates. Our host served up cherry and orange dark chocolate squares from Endangered Species Chocolate.

Smore Recipe OrangeCherry       Smore RecipeAlmondJoy

S’more making is a delicious art form!

 

These recipe cards serve to inspire.

 

Use these or come up with your own concoctions. Fun part? Naming them!

 

 

Smorepinecone

Clever touches like pine cone card holders make the table memorable and extra delicious. Speaking of delicious, you can purchase this bulk box of bite-sized chocolate squares from Endangered Species Chocolate.

So. Who’s ready to throw a party?

Share your s’more party ideas with us below.

Jun
6

World Oceans Day

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Join people around the planet celebrate and honor the body of water which links us all! Visit World Oceans Day’s website to find an event in your area to connect you to saving the sea. Or set off on your own to make a difference; 5 Ways You Can Protect the Ocean, written by Brad Nahill, Co-Founder of SEE Turtles, can get you started Want more ways to help? Check out our post on ways you can protect the ocean while on your next beach visit.