A celebration of the island’s organic chocolate production, the festival features a number of chocolate-centric activities that serve to educate participants on the history of cocoa in the country, illustrate how local cocoa goes from ‘tree to bar’, and explore the food’s current role in the culinary scene.
This year’s theme is ‘Creating Generation Cocoa’ – the festival kicks off with a visit to Grenada’s House of Chocolate in Saint George’s, and each of the following days has a specific theme: ‘Healthy Benefits of Cocoa’, ‘Rum, Chocolate & Jammin’, ‘It’s all about Bean to Bar’, and ‘Cook it up’, among others. The schedule features a variety of activities such as cooking classes, a tour of Diamond Chocolate Factory, a chocolate street food event and a trip to Crayfish Bay Organic farm, where participants can learn how to pick cocoa pods and harvest the beans themselves. The festival closes with a Chocolate Arts and Crafts Bazaar and an island-wide after party on the country’s most popular beaches.
Nutmeg long held the title of the nation’s main agricultural export, earning Grenada the nickname ‘Spice Isle’, until the landfall of Hurricane Ivan in 2004, which decimated the country’s farm infrastructure. The fast-growing cocoa crop emerged as a key export as Grenada’s staple crops struggled to rebound, and it continues to play a large role in the nation’s economy.
Those wishing to attend the Chocolate Fest can either purchase the Cocoa Pass, which allows entry to all the festival’s paid events, or they may pay entry for individual events, which range in price from US $12 to $58. The festival also offers several free events including the Grand Opening ceremony, the Chocolate Art Exhibition and Tasting and the Cocoa Chocolate workshops.