1760s-1800s - Cocoa for the masses

Apothecaries, Grocers & Tea Merchants

On Charles Churchman's death in 1761 the business including water-wheel mill was sold to Joseph Fry, a Bristol apothecary who had been operating a single-shop business (also selling cocoa) for the previous eight years, and his business partner John Vaughan.

Fry & Vaughan now immediately took on the mantle of largest chocolate manufacturer in the land, and it retained the goodwill built up in the Churchman's Patent Chocolate brand name.

The second big name in the business, Tuke's of York, first manufactured cocoa in 1785 when Henry Tuke joined his father William in the business which had been established some 60 years earlier as a grocery shop in York. The shop sold local and imported goods, including tea and cocoa. Henry's products included the highly successful ‘Tuke's Superior Rock Cocoa'.

Traders selling chocolate and cocoa often also traded in coffee, but especially tea. So it is not surprising that the leading brands in the much larger tea industry were able to extend into chocolate relatively easily.

Thomas Twining from Painswick, Gloucestershire, opened Britain's first known tea room at 216 Strand, London, in 1706, and this still operates today. By 1791, and probably long before, the company was also selling Twining's Cocoa through grocers around the country and continued to do so, along with Chocolate and Chocolate Powder, until at least 1838.

Apothecaries, Grocers & Tea Merchants
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