Michiana's Menu: An insight on the start of The South Bend Chocolate Company
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Visiting the Chocolate Café in downtown South Bend might be your favorite afternoon treat! But have you ever wondered how these candies even arrived to the shelves?
Nestled just off of sample street, the South Bend Chocolate Company is where these sweet treats first start their journey. Over 28 years ago, President Mark Tarner, took his father’s vision and expanded it into a 60-thousand-square-foot factory that now produces more than 500 products.
It’s recognized as the fastest growing chocolate company in the United States with 15 locations and 7,000 distributors, nationwide.
“If you set a goal, you can do the impossible,” says Tarner.
It really is Willy Wonka in your own backyard! So, what is the secret to making the perfect candy? For Tarner, it’s the quality of his products. Each confection is created by hand and uses regional ingredients which ensures a taste that melts in your mouth. But, that’s only one reason customers keep coming in.
“I am in the service business, and we have a great product but you can go anywhere but if you have great service you will come back,” says Tarner.
The chocolate company continues to positively impact the community with job opportunities and a spot to satisfy your sweet tooth. Although the business has blossomed beyond Michiana, South Bend will always be home.
“I hope that when I am done doing this job that I have had the most impact on anyone in my generation on my city. We named it the South Bend Chocolate company, you cannot walk away from it and other cities ask us to move especially the factory and I am a local guy,” says Tarner.
Further information about the South Bend Chocolate Company can be found here.