When you think about eating raspberries straight from the bush or enjoying a coconut on a tropical beach, one thing becomes clear: fresh ingredients can create unique moments of joy. What many people don’t know is that freshness also makes a major difference when it comes to chocolate, explains Johannes Läderach, the oldest son from the third generation of the family and CEO of the Swiss chocolate factory.
“The joy of fresh chocolate is what’s most important to us. We pay close attention to the quality of every single ingredient but also to the way in which we manufacture our chocolate. We are creative, we want to suprise the customer time and again, and we want to make chocolate that can be enjoyed with all the senses.”
FRESHNESS FROM SWITZERLAND
The fresh taste of Läderach chocolate begins in the rain forest and in the Swiss Alps. Läderach is one of the few chocolate manufacturers that monitors the entire production process from the cocoa bean all the way to the shop counter. All Läderach chocolate is manufactured in Switzerland in the canton of Glarus. This holistic view allows the Swiss chocolatier to guarantee the sustainable, premium quality of its cocoa and to use this top-quality cocoa to make exquisite chocolate. This, in turn, is used to make Läderach’s tenderly smooth, melt-in-the-mouth chocolate creations.
One distinctive aspect of this process is that the liquid chocolate is transported from the production facility in Bilten to the factory in nearby Ennenda while it is still warm, ensuring maximum freshness and thus a unique taste experience. Läderach’s beloved original FrischSchoggi™ is manufactured fresh daily and delivered to its points of sale within just a few days – for freshness that you can taste.
THE PATH TO THE BEST COCOA
Cocoa, Läderach’s most important raw material, travels from Ghana and South America to the factory in Glarus.
“If you want to manufacture the best chocolate, you need to make sure you have the best cocoa. We know our farmers personally and work together closely with their families, local organisations and non-governmental organisations. For example, all of the cocoa we source is certified by the Rainforest Alliance,” explains Johannes Läderach.
Among other things, this means that the company pays over one third more than the standard market prices for its cocoa. Läderach also enables the organisation of workshops for local farmers as carried out by the non-governmental organisation Rainforest Alliance and provides them with tools to help protect the environment and increase yields sustainably.
INNOVATIVE CHOCOLATIER CULTURE
The selected raw materials used to make Läderach’s quality chocolate are transformed into miniature masterpieces by hand with a great deal of attention to detail. Läderach’s chocolatiers are continually developing new varieties, products and seasonal creations.
“We believe in authentic craftsmanship and are extremely passionate about what we do. We still make many of our products by hand,” says Johannes.
The company has also attracted international attention with its artful chocolate-making. In 2018, Elias Läderach, the second-oldest son in the third generation of the family, and a member of Group Management, became the first Swiss chocolatier to win the World Chocolate Masters.
But Läderach chocolate doesn’t just taste delicious – a visit to one of our more than 100 chocolateries is an experience in itself. The more than 20 classic varieties of FrischSchoggi™ are displayed in large slabs at open counters, where they are broken into individual pieces by hand and sold. Furthermore, with their FrischSchoggi™ limited editions, Läderach’s chocolatiers regularly create new and exciting taste experiences. The exclusive product range also includes more than 80 different pralines and truffles, airy Mini Mousses which are a creative take on traditional chocolate foam kisses, exquisite chocolate popcorn, and much more.
For chocoholics who want to dive even further into their passion for Swiss chocolate-making, Läderach opened the House of Läderach in Bilten, at the foot of the Glarus Alps, in 2020. In addition to a spacious shop area with the world’s longest FrischSchoggi™ counter, the House of Läderach also offers visitors an interactive factory tour, live production encounters, a walk-in workshop where they can try their hand at chocolate-making, and a café. In short, it is an experience for all the senses.
SWISS ROOTS AND A GLOBAL REACH
Today, Läderach employs around 1,300 individuals around the world from a total of 47 countries. The company is currently managed by the third generation of the family – Johannes Läderach, son of the owner Jürg Läderach. At Läderach, principles such as openness, honesty, respect, responsibility and family values are the building blocks for a strong foundation. Elias and David Läderach also hold key positions in the company and play an important role in its success.
The regional expansion of Läderach’s network has attracted international attention: in 2019, the company opened its first chocolateries with a fresh, modern design in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. The 100th branch opened on Fifth Avenue in New York City in December 2020. This means that Läderach’s premium chocolate is now sold in more than 100 Läderach chocolateries worldwide with sales locations in 15 countries including Switzerland, Germany, Austria, the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada, as well as via franchise partners in the Middle East and Asia. From the online shop, chocolate lovers can also order Läderach specialities from Switzerland and have them delivered to their homes with just the click of a mouse.
A SWEET SUCCESS STORY
After its founding in 1962, Läderach immediately made a name for itself in the confectionery industry. It soon acquired top hotels and restaurants as customers – customers that Läderach continues to delight today with its personalised confectionery creations.
In 1970, a round chocolate shell weighing just 2,7 grams truly got the ball rolling. In the canton of Glarus, chocolatier Rudolf Läderach Junior invented and patented the “process for the production of thin-walled hollow truffle shells”. This new method of producing thin-walled hollow shells simplified truffle production while at the same time improving their quality – a revolutionary innovation in the confectionery world and the start of the family company’s expansion. With the acquisition of Merkur Confiserien in 2004, the chocolate specialists paved the way for their entry into the world of direct-to-consumer sales. In 2011, Johannes and Elias Läderach took the reins, making them the third generation to run the traditional Swiss family company.
In 2012, they invested in a new production facility, also located in Glarus. Having its own chocolate factory makes Läderach one of the few premium producers that can manufacture its own chocolate and closely monitor the entire production process from the cocoa bean to the shop counter. This guarantees sustainable quality from raw materials all the way to the final product. Visitors can observe every step in the high-quality production process at the House of Läderach, which opened in Bilten in 2020. Its ability to monitor the entire value chain and the fact that the company has been consistently owned and operated by the same family are the reasons why, for almost 60 years now, Läderach has stood for the ultimate in innovation and quality.