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FCIA is often asked, "What is Fine Chocolate?" Our response - it's the ingredients that determine if it deserves to be called fine chocolate. We've developed recommended ingredient standards to help both industry professionals and chocolate lovers differentiate fine chocolate from mass market products.


First let's look at the ingredients that may be present in fine pure chocolate. We feel fine chocolate and chocolate products should only contain the ingredients on the following lists, though they may not contain all of them.


Dark Chocolate Ingredients: Cacao liquor, sugar, cacao butter, lecithin, and vanilla.

Milk Chocolate Ingredients: Cacao liquor, sugar, cacao butter, milk solids, milk fat, lecithin, vanilla.

White Chocolate Ingredients: Sugar, Cacao butter, milk solids, milk fat, lecithin, vanilla.

Other names for the above ingredients you might find on a label: 

  • cocoa liquor, chocolate liquor, unsweetened chocolate, cacao mass, cocoa mass, chocolate fondant, cocoa beans, cacao beans, chocolate beans, cacao seeds, cocoa seeds, chocolate seeds.
  • cacao butter, cocoa butter, cacao oil, cocoa oil, cocoa fat, cacao fat.
  • Milk, cream, whole milk, condensed milk, milk crumb, dry milk powder, dry cream powder, milk solids, dry milk solids, milk fat, butter oil, butter fat.
  • Soy Lecithin, Lecithin, soya lecithin.
  • Vanilla, Real Vanilla, Vanilla Beans, Whole Vanilla Beans

Note: In our opinion there can be no substitutions for these ingredients (one fat for another, vanillin in replacement of vanilla, etc.)


  • Ingredients: cacao liquor, milk solids, cacao butter, butter, vanilla, natural flavorings, cacao beans, cacao seeds, cocoa powder, nuts, and soy lecithin/glucose
  • natural flavors include: real vanilla, vanilla beans, fresh herbs, fresh fruit, fruit purees, liquor

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Executive Director: Bill Guyton / 1.206.577.9983 / Email Bill

Event Manager: Nicole Price / 1.312.953.4541 / Email Nicole

For membership inquiries: Jennifer Wicks / 1.406.370.8606 / Email Jennifer


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