November 22, 2004
I don't know if it is less than kosher to discuss another commercial chocolate website here, so just let me know if it is.
Anyway, I have noticed that they have been out of a lot of Valhrona products for a while now. The site says that the shipment keeps getting delayed. Someone I spoke to there also said that they have been expecting a shipment from Bonnat forever.
Does anybody have an idea what could be the problem? I know nothing of that aspect of the industry. I have ordered from them and from here, but it is more economical for me (in America) to get what I can from them.
Mike (restin' on my laurels and my hardys too)
August 1, 2006
Indeed, it's very frustrating both for us, the consumer, and them, the distributor. The problem lies with Valrhona and their notoroious shroud of secrecy. If you check http://www.chocosphere.com, they have posted a disclaimer mentioning the status of the Valrhona shipment. Basically, Valrhona keeps delaying the shipments for unknown reasons. No one knows but Valrhona, and once the chocolate arrives, you better get it while the getting is good.
April 29, 2004
In talking to Chocosphere I know that there were some issues with Valrhona last year...apparently they had some pretty severe supply problems and most of the Valrhona (specifically the named origin bars) stayed in Europe, thus not making it to Oregon (Chocosphere).
As usual with Valrhona, you won't get much of an explanation from them on the whys and wherefores of such events...
September 30, 2004
It could also be due to FDA restrictions on importing food items. Valhrona might have plenty of the product, but if it's stopped at the border and questioned, and a timely response isn't given, the product gets destroyed.
I've also had experience with customs (not into the US, but into other countries) where boarder agents see something labelled chocolate, and the package never makes it to it's destination 8-)
Not saying either of these are the case, but they are possibilities one can't exclude.
September 5, 2004
since sept 11th, any food parcel that is sent commercially to the US (even by post) has to be pre registered with the FDA
That's why a lot of smaller producers do not want to sent anymore there. It takes us on average 20 minutes to do the online form for each parcel for the US... so notnecessarily worth it. We still do it as a shop but as a service, many others like jean paul hevin in Paris have stopped. We've had also several parcels with proper documents going missing...