The story of Steve Prickett; once an engineer, now a chocolate maker
Steve and Andrea Prickett started Eldora Chocolate as a way to satisfy Steve’s curiosity and love of chocolate.
His engineering background in food manufacturing and 32-year career as a financial advisor taught him the discipline and love for beautiful companies, whose practices could be sustainable, and whose process and place of business could be a generous, loving atmosphere where customers and employees alike could enjoy and thrive. These qualities are evident in the building designed by wife Andrea, whose 30-year career was in the design industry. The building design was named “Modern Barn”.
Meanwhile, Steve sharpened his chocolate-making skills by taking classes with Ecole Chocolat, a Canadian firm. He furthered strengthened his experience by being under the tutelage of ChocoSol in Toronto and Mindo Chocolate in Dexter, Michigan.
Eldora’s ethos is “just use Real Ingredients”. No artificial colors, artificial flavors, lecithin or preservatives are used in making Eldora’s chocolates. To broaden his knowledge of cocoa bean flavor around the world, Steve set out to make chocolate with just real ingredients. Today, he claims to have made chocolate using beans sourced from 25 countries and 36 origins.
In addition to his chocolate-making skills, it was very important for Eldora to put to practice the couple’s values of sustainability, treating employees well, recycling, reusing and putting the customer at the center of human interaction.
Steve explains, “Our bar wrapper is entirely compostable. We are proud to support KIVA, Heirloom Cacao Preservation and The Rainforest Project, as well as many local businesses and suppliers. We source all our cocoa beans from farms and buyers whose practices model organic techniques, even if they aren’t officially certified. We are perfectly comfortable paying well above market prices to these farmers in order to see them stay in business. We believe that when the supply chain is in balance, everybody wins.”