Hershey’s Co., announced last week that it will buy Scharffen Berger Chocolate Maker Inc., a premium chocolate manufacturer based out of Berkeley, California. This merger makes perfect sense considering America’s taste in chocolate is growing darker, and Scharffen Berger has been a leader in this chocolate revolution. Does this mean we’ll soon be enjoying the Scharffen Berger Kit Kat? Or maybe Scharffen Berger coated Reese’s Pieces? Unlikely, but critics are worried that Hershey’s mass market approach will inevitably bring down the Scharffen Berger quality we have grown to love.
Hershey claims that they have no plans to change Scharffen Berger, leaving John Scharffenberger in charge of operations and maintaining the Scharffen Berger brand name. Only time will tell how the Scharffen Berger quality will change, but I do expect the new Scharffen Berger-Hershey hybrid to significantly raise the quality of Hershey’s chocolate available today. At the very least, I believe Hershey will do to dark chocolate what they once did for milk chocolate- help it reach the masses. Perhaps Hershey will once again change how America eats chocolate.