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Sweet Impact Mama

All-natural coloring for cocoa butter

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Last month, I posted about the trouble I was having with the cocoa butter brand I was using that was over-spraying terribly. Kerry Beal was totally correct - it was the melting point. I switched to Callebaut's cocoa butter and it works perfectly. 

But the reason I was working with coloring my own was because I'd gotten in a bit deep on finding a source for all-natural dyes that work in cocoa butter. Only 3 colors from Chef Rubber's line have worked consistently well for me. One of the yellows, the Peruvian Purple and their white. And NO red or blue have come close to true colors that blend and are strong. My deep dive led me to https://sensientfoodcolors.com/en-us/

They've sent me their 3 microfine blues to sample and 2 of their reds. When they sent me the samples, the size of them sent me into both joy and dread. They were nicely generous, based on how little it takes to color several ounces of cocoa butter. The colors are VERY strong. But dread, because that probably means they'd need me to purchase more than I needed to have. (They have a 12-18 month shelf life. I have yet to ask if they can be frozen or anything to extend that time.) 

I've played around with them. Apparently, one of the big issues in the past, with natural colorants, is their ability to hold true color under lights, for very long. I haven't totally finished my tests, but the sales rep has been straight (i think) about which colors have been dependable and which ones aren't. Blues and Reds are apparently great. Their yellow, green and orange aren't the best. 

I'm attaching some photos from my "play time" with the colors. I've sent them and my experiences with the colors, to Chef Rubber's rep that handles their all natural color line. He hasn't responded yet (5 days and counting). Shouldn't be too surprised, since I'm not particularly of notice to companies that large. If I can't get them to consider working with Sensient, I'm probably going to have to go it alone. Which means I'd love to find a couple of other smallish chocolatiers who might be interested in splitting orders with me. Not sure if folks do that around here. 

So, here's the red and the blues. Any thoughts or ideas that this community might have, regarding how I can proceed from here, would be wonderful!






 

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You guys are really kind. The top and middle pics are the only ones that were particularly worked on. The red & pink shiny ones were just pure play, to see how the reds worked out on dark chocolate.

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How long is the time frame that is needed to hold their colour under lights (i.e. what amount of time is "not the best")? What is that relative to the shelf life / turn around time of the products you're producing? It might be a non-issue if those two times are the same :)

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Well, since they haven't done much testing on chocolates under lights, I'm not 100% sure. Most of my chocolates don't stay in the counter more than a few weeks, these days, but since they are at a wholesale customer's location, I don't have quite as tight of controls. I get the impression that they have not broken into the colored cocoa butter world at all. They seem to have been focused on markets such as cereals, beverages, baked goods, etc. I think they've gotten into candy coatings, but that's it. The company seems to be huge and their R & D department paperwork and sample distribution is serious... top notch paperwork, sample packing, etc. 

 

At this point, I'm quite happy with what I've seen with the blues and reds. But, like I said above, my biggest problem is that I'm just not able to go through their minimum size purchase, fast enough. 1kg of powder, when it only takes about 2 tsp max to do an 8 oz container of cocoa butter....One has to go through a LOT of each cocoa butter color in a year, to need that much. 

 

 

 

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26 minutes ago, Sweet Impact Mama said:

Well, since they haven't done much testing on chocolates under lights, I'm not 100% sure. Most of my chocolates don't stay in the counter more than a few weeks, these days, but since they are at a wholesale customer's location, I don't have quite as tight of controls. I get the impression that they have not broken into the colored cocoa butter world at all. They seem to have been focused on markets such as cereals, beverages, baked goods, etc. I think they've gotten into candy coatings, but that's it. The company seems to be huge and their R & D department paperwork and sample distribution is serious... top notch paperwork, sample packing, etc. 

 

At this point, I'm quite happy with what I've seen with the blues and reds. But, like I said above, my biggest problem is that I'm just not able to go through their minimum size purchase, fast enough. 1kg of powder, when it only takes about 2 tsp max to do an 8 oz container of cocoa butter....One has to go through a LOT of each cocoa butter color in a year, to need that much. 

 

 

 

Wonder if they would be willing to entertain something where you pay for the 1 kg at the beginning and they send you out 200 grams once a year? Though ultimately it probably makes the most sense to go in with a few other people. 


Edited by Kerry Beal (log)

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1 minute ago, Kerry Beal said:

Wonder if they would be willing to entertain something where you pay for the 1 kg at the beginning and they send you out 200 grams once a year? 

I'd have to ask them. Not entirely sure how that might work on their end, since I think they only package in 1kg containers. 

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Just now, Sweet Impact Mama said:

I'd have to ask them. Not entirely sure how that might work on their end, since I think they only package in 1kg containers. 

It would be like sending you a sample once a year - that's around 200 grams I think?

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1 minute ago, Sweet Impact Mama said:

None that I've been able to tell, and I have a pretty strong sense of order or texture or taste discrepancies. 

8 minutes ago, Chocolot said:

Is there a smell or taste to them?

 

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2 minutes ago, Kerry Beal said:

It would be like sending you a sample once a year - that's around 200 grams I think?

They sent about 4 ounces of each color. I could probably used 8 ounces of it, on my own, per year, pretty comfortably... maybe closer to 12.

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Just now, Sweet Impact Mama said:

They sent about 4 ounces of each color. I could probably used 8 ounces of it, on my own, per year, pretty comfortably... maybe closer to 12.

So about 1/3 of your kg. How outrageous is the price of a kg?

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1 minute ago, Kerry Beal said:

So about 1/3 of your kg. How outrageous is the price of a kg?

The lowest prices is $248 and the highest is $380 per kilo.  And by my estimation, the ration of powder to cocoa butter is approx. 1/3 of an ounce to 8 ounces of cocoa butter.  Oooh - I just realized something! I wonder if they've tested whether mixing it in cocoa butter changes the shelf life at all? 

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Thanks to Kerry for pointing me to this topic. I live literally a half mile to these guys, and learned about Sensient when I was scouting tours for the upcoming chocolate and confections workshop. They made it clear to me that they didn't play with small players, but I am interested, and if there is some momentum then we can buy their kilos and split it up at the workshop (and mail it to others).

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