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All Things Chocolate Fundraising for Schools

By Clay Boggess on Mar 4, 2023
Chocolate Fundraising for Schools

Everything You Need and Want to Know About Chocolate and Chocolate Fundraisers.

Chocolate- you are likely very familiar with it. But how well do you know this beloved treat? Chocolate is an ancient food with a long and sacred history, only recently becoming a top candidate for school fundraisers. In this article, we dive deep into the world of chocolate, learning everything we could need or want to know about the sweet treat and the resulting candy bar fundraisers.

The History of Chocolate

Before processing, chocolate is referred to as cacao. In its natural state, it is far more bitter than sweet before we add milk and sugar.

There is more to the history of chocolate than most people assume. It has been around since ancient times. It is estimated to be nearly 3,000 years since many Mesoamerican cultures, such as the Olmec, Maya, Toltec, and Aztec peoples first cultivated it. ‘Chocolate’ comes from the Aztec word ‘xocaotl’ and the Olmec word ‘ka-ka-w,’ referencing a bitter cacao drink.

Many ancient and modern cultures consider it sacred, ‘food of the gods.’ The Mayans even buried their dignitaries with bowls of cacao.

The Europeans brought sweetened chocolate when Christopher Columbus discovered the Americas and brought cacao beans to Spain after his fifth voyage in 1502. The creation of the first candy bar didn’t come about until Joseph Fry made a paste by mixing melted cacao and butter. He went on to open the world’s first chocolate company in 1761: J.S. Fry and Sons.

America soon followed with its first chocolate company, Bakers Chocolate Company, in 1780.

Today, chocolate is a widely loved treat. The average American eats a half pound or more per month, bringing in more than 4 billion dollars annually in the United States alone. Recently, the chocolate industry has been trending toward high-quality, sustainably, and ethically produced chocolate, introducing many artisanal lines, including locally-owned shops and major corporate players.

Major Chocolate Fundraising Suppliers

There are several school fundraiser chocolate suppliers to consider when launching your school’s campaign. Major chocolate brands include the following:

World’s Finest Chocolate

‘World’s Finest Chocolate’ opened in 1939 and pioneered chocolate fundraising in the 1940s turning chocolate bar fundraising into a billion-dollar industry. It is a world-famous brand with a more extended history than most; however, working with the company can be seen as controversial due to repeated investigations for suspicions of child labor on their outsourced plantations in Africa and South America.

World’s Finest offers a wide variety of flavors, with prices starting as low as $1 per bar.


Chocolatiers supplies $1 and $2 chocolate bars. They are manufactured in a peanut-free facility and include creamy caramel, milk chocolate almond, dark chocolate almond, and crispy rice. Schools can earn up to 58% profit with the jumbo-sized $2 Chocolatiers candy bars and up to 50% with the $1 Chocolatiers candy bars.

Chocolatiers earned second place in a recent top-five chocolate fundraisers list. Past fundraising participants stated that the company’s excellent customer service and candy bars were easy to sell.

America’s Variety

America’s Variety offers the original $1 chocolate bars that have been top sellers for over twenty years. They offer five premium peanut-free flavors, including creamy caramel, milk chocolate almond, crispy rice, milk chocolate, and dark chocolate almond. Sellers can earn up to 50% profit margin and $120 per case.

How to Sell Chocolate: Types and Methods

Sweet treat fundraisers are straightforward, with many ways to launch them. As we saw above, there are many different chocolate suppliers. There are also many types of chocolate and varying selling methods.

Types of Chocolate

Chocolate can be sold as:

  • chocolate bars
  • giant candy bars
  • boxed chocolate
  • powdered chocolate
  • artisanal candies
  • chocolate pretzel rods
  • chocolate dipped sweets, fruits, and other treats

Sellers can choose one or a combination of the above types of chocolate.

Methods of Selling Chocolate

There are a few ways to organize your candy bar campaign. These include:

  • door-to-door sales
  • virtual brochure sales
  • selling to businesses
  • selling at events
  • phone and text buy-ins

Use one or a combination of the above sales methods to execute your campaign successfully.

Other Major Fundraising Products

If you’re not sold on chocolate yet, don’t worry! There are other fundraising ideas you can choose from. Here are a few different examples of product campaigns:

  • cookie dough
  • snacks
  • tumblers
  • food (ex: build-your-own pizza kits)
  • popcorn
  • discount cards
  • school spirit merchandise

Pros and Cons of Choosing a Chocolate Fundraiser

There are many food fundraiser pros and cons. The pros of choosing a chocolate fundraiser are:

  • Chocolate is loved by many, making it an easy sell.
  • The product is allergen-free.
  • The campaign can be executed in person or virtually

Cons of choosing a chocolate fundraiser are:

  • It is a popular choice, meaning competition will likely exist.
  • Some potential buyers don’t like chocolate and will be left without an alternative option.
  • You’ll be tempted to indulge in your tasty product!

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Author Bio Clay Boggess, Author

Clay Boggess has been designing fundraising programs for schools and various nonprofit organizations throughout the US since 1999. He’s helped administrators, teachers, and outside support entities such as PTAs and PTOs raise millions of dollars. Clay is an owner and partner at Big Fundraising Ideas.

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