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Changing the World One Chocolate at a Time - The Chocolatier
Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Aneesh Popat, Founder of The Chocolatier, located in Sandy, United Kingdom.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
The Chocolatier is a luxury artisan chocolate business making fine chocolates with sustainable cocoa. We supply to Royalty, The Houses of Parliament, Michelin Starred Restaurants, Luxury Hotels, and some of the finest stores in the world.
Tell us about yourself
After studying Mathematics at university, I spent two years learning about Comparative World Philosophies in India; it was here that I decided to pursue a life with chocolate. I was inspired by the idea that we should spend our lives doing what brings us wealth in the form of joy rather than monetary wealth. The Chocolatier's mission is "to change the world one chocolate at a time," and this drives me daily. Through chocolate and through making the right choice in life, we can support tribal people in the forests where the cocoa originates, wildlife and nature in these regions, and also all the way through the chain to us, our lives on a daily basis through moments of indulgence and joy amidst the stresses we all only know as a constant in today's fast-paced world.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment is to have sustained the business with ethical cocoa. It is an expensive choice and stressful in that the survival of the business is all about money and profit, not about change. To put change at the front, the spear tip behind which business drives everything forward, is a constant challenge to keep up. I feel excitement and pride every time I open a bag of chocolate, and the smell reminds me of the great work and difference we make.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner is the knowledge that lives depend on you. I take it very seriously that my team has security financially but ever increasingly emotional security, as life can be hard - where with the advancement of technology where relationships increase in digital closeness, we face a world where we are all alienated.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Focus on what makes you different.
- Focus on what your legacy will be.
- Know your numbers.