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Could it sell chocolate?

Selecting Wrapping Paper

“So what species should we put on the wrapper?”  is the main thought that obsesses our minds after determining a flavor for a new Endangered Species Chocolate bar.  This packaging element is the first thing people notice about our chocolate bars.  The success of a flavor can often hinge on the appeal of the animal.  Case in point:  a boost in our Smooth Milk Chocolate Bar sales coincided with a cover art switch from the red salmon to the sea otter.  Coincidence?

Everyone can connect with the cute and cuddly.  But we don’t want to do a disservice to the rest of the world’s endangered species – you know, the ones that some consider a tad creepy.  So yes, the majority of our chocolates feature animal photography that is easy on the eyes but that doesn’t mean we neglect the weirder ones.  Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t.

Would a chocolate bar boasting a bat on the wrapper fly? 

We boldly assigned the bat as the ambassador of our Intense Dark Chocolate with Cacao Nibs bar in 2004.  Among the most endangered of wildlife, bats, as pollinators and controllers of insects, are vital to nature’s existence.  But they give many people the willies!  That’s why I’m pleased to report that “The Bat Bar” has been embraced by our consumers and enjoys a healthy sales ranking to this day.

An Iguana?  Really?!

It doesn’t always work though.  Take our long ago misguided notion to have a marine iguana grace the cover of the Organic Smooth Dark Chocolate Bar (view it here).  This flavor should have been a shoo in for top selling flavor but it languished.  After months of struggle, it was stuck being the least popular chocolate bar in our collection.  However, almost immediately after the wrapper art was morphed into a butterfly, this bar soared to the top sales spot and is still there today!

Ophiophobia (fear of snakes)

So would my debilitating fear of snakes keep me from grabbing a chocolate bar that had a serpent on the wrapper?  I’d like to think not.  Each creature holds its own important place here on Earth – and honestly, I think there is beauty to be found in the strange and unique (a sentiment shared by ancient Greek philosopher, Aristotle).

“In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous.”  – Aristotle

What creatures do you find fascinating that others tend to shy away from?

3 Comments to “Could it sell chocolate?”

  • How about a wrapper with the American Wild Horses?? They are endangered now. More and more are rounded up by the Bureau of Land Management each year, and so many are without homes that they are being euthanized. They are a species that is going to be extinct at our own hands :( as are most.

  • Panda Bears and/or Polar Bears!

  • I think a lot of it has to do with how the animal’s appearance pairs with the chocolate and the context of the whole wrapper. The salmon wrapper displayed the fish quite prominently, and in thinking about the chocolate bar I get a very fishy impression, and fish ain’t good with chocolate. The bat, on the other hand, may be a frightening animal to some, but its color matches up well with something as a cocoa nibs bar.

    I think a snake could sell chocolate if an appropriate species were matched up with an appropriate flavor. Say, for instance, matching up a very green snake with a granny smith apple flavor — though I don’t really desire that flavor. Also, that black and orange tarantula might do well for the 70% orange bar.

    Think of how the colors go together.

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