An increased customer demand is seeing local chocolatiers make another move.
Michael Foote, who owns and operates Appleton Chocolates with his wife, Heather, said the business will remain open inside the Tipperary Café on Main Street until the end of December before closing until roughly May.
“We’ve been busy as heck,” said Foote. “We spent 19 years in a cabin in the woods, and when we moved to Main Street, there wasn’t a lot of risk, but it was still a big jump. We went from no overhead costs to the middle of Tatamagouche. We had no idea what to expect.”
The move over the May long weekend in 2016 was a good one for the business, with business that first year tripling over the year previous.
“And this year, we’re up another 40 per cent,” said Foote.
Because of the increased demand, the business owners need more space than they currently have.
“The Tipperary has done so well, they need more space as well,” he added.
Come the beginning of the year, the business will move to another location where they’ll still be able to produce chocolates, and keep orders fulfilled. In the meantime, they won’t be offering their own retail space, however products will be available at the Tatamagouche Yarn and Company on Main Street.
While operating out of the Tipperary, Foote said they utilized about 575 square feet. The new location – which will be the old Dr. Moss facility just across from the Tipperary – will offer about 1,000 square feet.
“It will allow us to have more employees and more machines for production,” said Foote.
The business currently employs one other person, alongside both Michael and Heather. Two summer hires are already in place.
While the business offers a variety of products, Foote said the truffles are the most popular.
“Last year, we produced about 100,000 truffles, and we’re on pace for about 150,000 by the end of this year,” he said.
There will be renovations being done to the new location, both inside and out, in the coming months to help prepare for the move. Hans Christian Jost will be working on the exterior, with the Footes getting the interior ready for production.
“It will be a fully-viewable production,” said Foote. “People need to see the effort and the quality that goes into their product. When you’re just buying a product, it’s not as good as seeing the process.”
Foote said the new location will be open by the beginning of May at the latest.
Booming business is seeing two businesses expand.
With Appleton Chocolates moving into its own location next year, that will give the Tipperary Café more space to work with.
Owners Richard and Angela Frotten will be utilizing the space, after business has been steady for the café.
“We’re both expanding, we’re both growing,” said Richard, about both the Tipperary Café and Appleton Chocolates. “We’ve got some new products in the works because of the extra space, but I can’t say what those products are.”
In total, the Tipperary will utilize the full 1,600 square feet (roughly).