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World's first edible chocolate comic to be launched

By Peter Stiff , 13-Dec-2005

Fresh from airing its photographic chocolate technology on the BBC's Dragons Den, Chocpix looks to have more innovation up its sleeve. At the ISM show next month, it will be unveiling the world's first edible comic.

The comic, to be made of chocolate, will be a development of the company's existing technology, which allows artwork, cartoons, logos and photographs to be captured onto chocolate bars.

Chocpix's managing director Frank Lia spoke to ConfectioneryNews.com about the startling innovation, which could potentially be highly lucrative:

"The idea with the comic is to tie in with a popular brand such as Marvel. The challenge is to make something with real detail."

The comic, expected to be licensed and available for purchase by the time it makes its debut at ISM, will consist of a single page or sheet of detailed chocolate.

The firm is currently able to detail chocolate down to one tenth of a millimeter, which should impress at the show, where Chocpix previously won an award for innovation in 2004.

Whether or not the comic proves to be successful commercially, it is surely an interesting vehicle in which to gain exposure, much like the company's recent appearance on television.

Chocpix participated on the BBC's popular television programme Dragon's Den, where entrepreneurs attempt to woo wealthy businessmen into investing in their companies.

"Our appearance on the television show was purely a matter of publicity, said Lia. "We were able to gain exposure for the business without giving away any equity and we never needed to accept any investment."

Chocpix didn't win investment but could well inspire other confectioners to take a chance at both securing investment and guaranteeing free prime time advertising.

The company also offers personalized chocolate, enabling customers to mould personal messages and photographs into chocolate, at what has become an affordable price with moulds now costing less than £300 to make.

"Initially the moulds were too pricey, meaning we couldn't pick up all the orders we wanted to, however now we have found ways to pull the price down to a level people can afford," said Lia.

Lia also recognizes the company's potential in the corporate chocolate market and said that the firm is currently in discussion over several new ventures.

In terms of future products, an Easter egg is currently being developed:

"The Easter egg is technically the most difficult product we've attempted as detail is going around the full 360 degrees. But we are hopeful and we have an interesting spread developing."

Chocpix is also investigating sugar confectionery, as it looks to expand by licensing its technology out around the world.

"At this time we are not trying to move into finished products we're looking to license what we have out to others, it's perfect for new products and the chocolate can easily be sourced from local markets."

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