Reclusive former AFL champion and Essendon coach James Hird has taken to Joy 94.9 FM, Melbourne’s gay and lesbian radio station, to spruik his fair trade chocolate business Cacao Hunters.

As I have aged, my taste buds have massively changed and I now appreciate really intense flavours. For example, I am partial to a glass of red wine, espresso coffee and very dark bitter chocolate. A few years ago I watched a compelling documentary about Willie Harcourt-Cooze who is a British based chocolatier.

The former Essendon coach has reinvented himself as a chocolate maker.

As a cacao-producer, Colombia would be considered a minnow when compared to the cacao-growing giants of West Africa––Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Cameron, which constitutes approximately 70% of global production.

Cadbury has yet to deliver on its threat to include kale in its sweets, but there’s still plenty of innovation in the chocolate world. Lee Tran Lam discovers the trends coming to a gift box near you.