From bean to bar with a voyage in between

  • News
  • July 12, 2016
  • Will Bowman
From bean to bar with a voyage in between

Rochelle Harrison and Gabe Davidson share a passion for provenance and sustainability of ingredients, as well as a love for chocolate. They founded the Wellington Chocolate Factory in 2013 to produce organic, ethically traded, bean-to-bar chocolate from a factory which is open to the public.

Back in 2014, the pair successfully met their Kickstarter goal of $36,000 for what they dubbed “The Wellington Chocolate Voyage.” The multilayered Kickstarter project revolved around the improvement of the growing, trading, and eating of chocolate. Its goals included:

1) Support a farming community in Bougainville that grows the high-quality chocolate varietal, ‘Criollo’. This allowed Wellington Chocolate Factory to purchase enough of the unique beans at a fair and premium price.

2) The “voyage” itself. Harrison and Davidson transported a ton of Criollo beans from Bougainville - beside Papua New Guinea - to the Wellington harbour by sailing ship, before turning them into chocolate at their factory in the city centre.

The team made it to Bougainville in September last year - the ship, ‘Uto ni Yalo’, came from Suva, Fiji. After a 29-day voyage through the Pacific, the ship was welcomed into Wellington in October, and Wellington Chocolate Factory finished the resulting chocolate bars in December. Wellington Chocolate Factory has this week put up a ‘Wall of Fame’ commemorating all the Kickstarter backers who made the trip possible.

Harrison is herself a master chocolatier and leads production. The exotic chocolate varietals she makes boast two ingredients: beans and sugar. As with most artisan products, a great deal of care goes into the entire experience and The Wellington Chocolate Factory is ensuring every aspect of the product is as enjoyable as the taste of the bar. The packaging is designed by local artists to capture the unique story behind each bar, in a similar approach to Wellington artisans Garage Project and their packaging art.

The most important part of creating lasting change in an industry with so much negative momentum is education. The Wellington Chocolate Factory operates a “factory store” that wafts beautiful smells, offers an insight into the process, and is staffed by passionate people who actually make the product. It’s a brilliant opportunity for people to witness a handcrafted product being created that supports every aspect of its journey from bean to bar.

​ ​

This is a community discussion forum. Comment is free but please respect our rules:

  1. Don’t be abusive or use sweary type words
  2. Don’t break the law: libel, slander and defamatory comments are forbidden
  3. Don’t resort to name-calling, mean-spiritedness, or slagging off
  4. Don’t pretend to be someone else.

If we find you doing these things, your comments will be edited without recourse and you may be asked to go away and reconsider your actions.
We respect the right to free speech and anonymous comments. Don’t abuse the privilege.


Macpac has created an online megastore

  • Technology
  • September 13, 2019
  • The Register
Macpac has created an online megastore

New Zealand outdoor equipment retailer Macpac found its website wasn’t keeping up with its $10 million plus international expansion, so it’s invested in a new site which introduces new content, accessibility and a frictionless experience.

Read more

Pak'nSave wins August's Ad Impact Award

  • News
  • September 12, 2019
  • StopPress Team
Pak'nSave wins August's Ad Impact Award

August was an amazing month for advertising and choosing a winner of the Colmar Brunton Ad Impact Award was a difficult task. This month, the honour goes to PAK’nSAVE with their latest advertisement ‘Saveyest Country’, which uses their classic stick man to show how New Zealanders are saving, not just at PAK’nSAVE.

Read more

Spark’s new concept store at Westfield Newmarket

  • Design
  • September 12, 2019
  • Sarah Dunn
Spark’s new concept store at Westfield Newmarket

When Westfield Newmarket opened, telecommunications company Spark took the opportunity to launch a new concept store which prioritised innovative technology and an immersive retail experience.

Read more

Social scoreboard

Zavy and The Register have worked together to create a scoreboard that compares how the top 25 traditional media advertising spenders in New Zealand have performed on social media over the past 30 days, updated in real time.

Concept to closet
Business coverage of New Zealand Fashion Week.
Regional rollercoaster
What does retail look like in 2019 for ...
Town centres
A positive retail environment over the past 12 ...
Amazon Arrival
Keeping up with all things Amazon as it ...
The Retail Yearbook 2017
As we battle our way through the busiest ...
The future is bright
We spoke with four retailers in their twenties ...
Hospitality enhancing retail
Some think food and integrated hospitality offerings will ...
Spotlight on signage
At first glance, the humble in-store sign might ...
Red Awards 2016
The Red Awards for retail interior design celebrate ...
Auckland Unitary Plan
Auckland is changing. The Unitary Plan will decide ...
How to open a store
Sarah Dunn considers what it would take to ...
All things to all people
Kiwi retailers share their omnichannel strategies.
Rising stars
Retail's top young achievers.
Delivering on your promises
The sale isn't over until your item is ...
Retail in heartland New Zealand
Retailers keep the regions pumping, but how strong ...
Women in retail help one another. We spoke ...
The changing face of retail
Shifting demographics are creating big changes in New ...
The retail yearbook
With the help of experts in the retail ...
Retail rogues
We put the spotlight on staff training. Jai ...
Here come the giants
Topshop has arrived in Auckland’s CBD, David Jones ...
From retail to e-tail
Ecommerce has become part of the way mainstream ...
Loyalty in the digital age
How are retailers maintaining loyalty? Sarah Dunn, Elly ...
Window shopping: A spotlight on social media
Sarah Dunn and Elly Strang look at how ...
The Innovators | In partnership with Spark Business
Technology is rapidly changing the retail industry as ...

Trust the process: Is there still a place for liquor licensing trusts?

Liquor licensing trusts are a unique corner of the retail market, but is the model still relevant in our fast-changing business environment? Sarah Dunn weighs ...

Sponsored content

Recruitment with a fresh frame of mind

Frame Retail is the recruitment agency with an eye for fashion retail.


Kathmandu becomes Australia and New Zealand’s largest B Corp business

  • News
  • September 11, 2019
  • The Register
Kathmandu becomes Australia and New Zealand’s largest B Corp business

Listed outdoor goods retailer Kathmandu has secured B Corp accreditation, making it the largest business of its kind to have done so in Australia and New Zealand.

Read more
Next page
Results for
About us.

The Register provides essential industry news and intelligence, updated daily. And the digital newsletter delivers the latest news to your inbox twice a week — for free!

©2009–2015 Tangible Media. All rights reserved.
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy policy.

The Register

Content marketing/advertising? Email or call 022 639 3004

View Media Kit