well, we got the answers...
"What does OCHO stand for? Is it the number 8?"
OCHO is a contraction of the words "Organic" and "Chocolate." But we could list 8 things to love about us...
"Where do you make the candy?"
For over 10 years we made our candy in Oakland, CA. In 2021, we decided to move production to the Islands of Trinidad & Tobago in the Caribbean. We wanted to make chocolate candy in an equatorial region to be closer to our ingredients and worldwide trade, thereby helping to keep more income opportunities in those origin countries.
"What is the shelf life on OCHO chocolates?"
All of our products containing peanut butter have a shelf life of 9 months from manufacture date. All other products containing caramel, coconut, nougat, etc. have a shelf life of 12 months from manufacture date. Production lot codes and Best By Dates are available on all of our packaging. Our products will not mold, spoil, or be unsafe to eat after this date, but they will run the risk of not appearing or tasting as fresh as possible.
"Why do Peanut Butter products have a 9-month shelf life?"
We choose to not use solid fats like palm oil to stabilize our peanut butter filling, as many other conventional brand products may do in an attempt to mitigate this issue (we are committed to being palm oil free). Confectionery products with a chocolate shell and peanut butter-based filling are all subject to fat migration. This is the process by which peanut oil from the filling will gradually make its way into the chocolate shell over time. Fat migration is especially sensitive to changes in storage environment and is accelerated by improper storage conditions that are too warm. As a result, we maintain a shorter shelf-life to do our best to ensure consumers are receiving a quality product.
"How should I store my delicious chocolate?"
With proper storage, our chocolate candy stays fresh for many months. Storing in a cool, dry location at room temperature and away from sunlight is the best choice. (ideal temp range is between 55-65 degrees F. ) Do not refrigerate or freeze chocolate as the temperature & humidity changes may cause it to bloom.
"My chocolate appears to have a light waxy coating, is it safe to eat?"
It sounds like your chocolate has suffered from a phenomenon known as "bloom", which gives the chocolate a dull, whitish appearance and may also alter the taste & texture of the center inside. While it is perfectly safe to consume, this is typically caused by a rapid change in temperature. When chocolate becomes too warm, the cocoa butter (fat crystals) present in the chocolate begin to soften, separate from the other ingredients, and rise to the surface. This happens quite frequently with all chocolate products if no preservatives or processing aids are used during the manufacturing of the product. Again, it’s totally safe to eat and in most situations, the change in taste is negligible.
"Are your bars containing allergens like peanuts, tree nuts, dairy and wheat made on the same equipment?"
Yes, all of our products are made on shared equipment. They also are made on equipment that handles Milk, Eggs, Tree nuts (coconut) and in the near future, wheat.
"Do you offer returns or exchanges?"
No, unfortunately we cannot honor any returns or exchanges. Due to food safety standards & the semi-perishable nature of chocolate, products cannot be returned or exchanged. If the product you purchased directly from our online store arrived to you with a quality issue, please reach out to us with your order information & photos so we can resolve the error.
"Are your products Gluten Free?"
Even though we do not add gluten-containing ingredients currently to our products, we are going to be making some in the future, and we have chosen to no longer be gluten-free certified.
"What is OCHO Day?"
We have a celebration on the 8th of every month! Even though our name OCHO comes from the O in Organic, and the CHO in Chocolate, we know that many people see the word OCHO and think of the number Eight. So, we embrace this with a 1 day super-sale each month. Lots of different things may be on sale on that day from month to month, it may be Halloween items after Halloween, it may be a new item that hasn't even launched yet, or it may be your favorite item! Be sure to subscribe to our emails, and you'll be the first to know!