This year, Wilbur Chocolate celebrates its 125th year of business in the chocolate industry.

This year, Wilbur Chocolate celebrates its 125th year of business in the chocolate industry. With an authentic American flavor, Wilbur offers a wide range of premium quality chocolate and cocoa products to confectioners, chefs, bakers, dairies and other food manufacturing businesses throughout North America.

In 1865, H.O. Wilbur and Samuel Croft began a confectionery business in Philadelphia. The company of Croft & Wilbur originally made a variety of candy, focusing on molasses and hard candies that were sold to railroad boys to resell to passengers. As business prospered, a separate company was needed. In 1884, Croft and Wilbur parted ways and a new company was created that specialized in chocolate and cocoa alone: H.O. Wilbur & Sons. In 1894, the famous Wilbur Buds chocolates were first introduced to consumers.

By 1934, all operations had relocated to Lititz, Pa., and that same factory continues to be utilized in the production of chocolate, chocolate chips and other products. Following several mergers with other confectionery manufacturers-including Suchard Societe Anonyme of Switzerland and Brewster-Ideal Chocolate Co. of Lititz-Wilbur became a wholly owned subsidiary of Cargill Inc. in 1992. Wilbur now operates factories in Lititz and Mt. Joy, Pa. as well as Burlington, Canada.

“The key to such longevity lies in the company’s commitment to anticipating trends and innovation,” said Courtney LeDrew, marketing manager, Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate. “By staying close to the needs of our customers and their consumers, we have maintained a tradition of quality chocolate products for 125 years in the industry.”

Wilbur was and still is noted for its fine quality chocolate coatings. The manufacturing plants currently produce millions of pounds of chocolate products and other various food ingredients each year. The Wilbur brand is owned by Cargill, one of the world’s major processors of cocoa beans.

Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate, based in Lititz, Pa., is a leading innovator and collaborator in chocolate, coatings and cocoa powder by bringing knowledge, technical expertise and consumer insights to drive customer growth. Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate is a subsidiary of Cargill, an international producer and marketer of food, agricultural, financial and industrial products and services. Founded in 1865, the privately held company employs 159,000 people in 68 countries. Cargill helps customers succeed through collaboration and innovation, and is committed to applying its global knowledge and experience to help meet economic, environmental and social challenges wherever it does business. For more information, visit www.cargill.com.