Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory

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From the Mountains of Colorado

 

 

 

 

Known for their caramel apples and fresh fudge, Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory is the brain child of Frank Crail.  Crail, who moved to Durango from Newport Beach, California to raise his family in a small town, was interested in opening a candy business.  He confessed to Candy Industry magazine that he would have opened a See’s Candies, but the company doesn’t sell franchises.

A Little History

 In 1981 the first store was opened on Main Street by Frank and two partners. In 1982 the company’s first franchises, one in Colorado Springs and one in Park City, Utah were opened. An offsite factory was also built that year.  In 1983 the two other partners left the business. In 1985 the company went public on the NASDAQ.  In 1996 Whitman’s Candies made an offer to buy the company for US$16 million but the offer was rejected.  Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory is now an international franchiser, confectionery manufacturer and retail operator in the United States, Canada and the United Arab Emirates. In 1985 the Company went public and is now traded on the NASDAQ exchange under the symbol “RMCF”.

The company is still based in the town of Durango located on the western slope of the Rocky Mountains in southwestern Colorado. From its 53,000-square-foot (4,900 m2) factory, the company manufactures an extensive line of premium chocolate candies and other confectionery products to supply its many franchise locations, delivered fresh by its fleet of refrigerated trucks. The factory typically produces approximately 300 chocolate candies and other confectionery products, using proprietary recipes developed primarily by its master candy maker. These products include many varieties of clusters, caramels, creams, meltaways, truffles and molded chocolates. Individual stores prepare a variety of caramel and candy apples, fudge, chocolate items and confections in full view of the customer using traditional cooking utensils such as copper kettles on gas-fired stoves and marble slab cooling tables.

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory knows that tourists often leave their diets at home. That’s why many of its candy stores are intentionally placed in factory outlet malls, regional malls, and tourist areas. It boasts about a dozen company-owned stores, 40-plus licensed-owned locations, and more than 300 franchised stores.  Its candy is also sold wholesale, through fundraising programs, as well as through the company’s website. Most of Rocky Mountain Chocolate’s sales come from its 300 factory-made premium chocolates and confections, which include clusters, truffles, fudge, barks, caramels, and molded chocolates; the remainder comes from franchise fees.

photo courtesy of costco.com

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