- The world celebrates the brilliance of the chocolate on 7 July as World Chocolate Day.
- Chocolate reportedly was discovered in 450 BC and originated first in Mesoamerica.
- Hotel Chocolat, Camellia, Finsbury Foods, Premier Foods, and Unilever could be some stocks to consider on World Chocolate Day.
There is perhaps no soul, young and old, that doesn’t go weak in the knees at the sight of chocolate. A day dedicated to celebrating the goodness of chocolate is enough proof of its popularity. From dark chocolates to milk chocolates, there is a whole variety for the connoisseur to enjoy. The versatility of chocolate is such that it easily can be incorporated into cakes, ice-creams, and various different desserts.
Chocolate reportedly was discovered in 450 BC and originated first in Mesoamerica. The beans of cacao pods were used to make fermented beverages in Mesoamerica. The Aztecs of the Mesoamerica culture believed that Quetzalcoatl who, according to legends, was banished by the gods for sharing chocolate with mortals, gifted it to them.
The word is Spanish in origin and was an adaptation of the classical Nahuatl xocolātl. Originally prepared as a drink, it was believed to be an aphrodisiac that strengthened the drink. Even, the seeds were used once as currency because it was very valuable.
As the world celebrates the brilliance of the chocolate on 7 July as World Chocolate Day, here are 5 chocolate related stocks to sweeten your day:
Hotel Chocolat Group Plc (LON: HOTC)
The British FTSE AIM 100 Index listed cocoa grower and chocolatier saw its revenue for the eight-week period up to 25 April 2021 increase 60 per cent compared to the same period a year ago. The period included both Mother’s Day and Easter, thus helping in revenue generation. The revenue in this period was higher by 19 per cent from the same period in 2019.
The company said the primary driver of revenue in this period was subscription products and digital channels, which are proof of the company’s robust model of omni-channel sales presence. Reopening of non-essential retail shops from 12 April onwards has been encouraging for the company, and it believes that for the full year ended 27 June, trading would be ahead of expectations.
Its shares have a one-year return of 22.5 per cent and a market capitalisation of £459.47 million.
Premier Foods Plc (LON: PFD)
The company licences Cadbury for the production of Mini Egg cakes and Crème Egg cupcakes. The shares of the FTSE 250 company have a year-to-date return of 9.86 per cent and a one-year return of 41.10 per cent. The shares have a market capitalisation of £941.31 million.
For the 52 weeks ended 3 April, the company’s revenue grew 10.3 per cent to £943.2 million compared to £847.1 million in FY2019-20. Adjusted profit before tax was up 23.5 per cent to £115.3 million from £93.3 million. The company’s online performance in the reported period grew by 104 per cent.
Finsbury Food Group Plc (LON: FIF)
The FTSE AIM listed company has an agreement with chocolate brand Thorntons to create chocolate treats. The shares of the company have a market capitalisation of £123.86 million, a year-to-date return of 18.97 per cent, and a one-year return of 56.67 per cent.
For the current fiscal year ended 26 June, the company said trading in the second half was strong. The company’s board expects that the full year’s profit before tax would not be less than £15 million, which was above market expectations. It also announced the reintroduction of dividend payments for the financial year ended 26 June.
Camellia Plc (LON: CAM)
The FTSE AIM company is over 130 years old, and the citrus fruit grown by the company is a key ingredient in the making of Chocolate Orange. The company makes various other ingredients that are used in making Easter treats. The shares have a market capitalisation of £189.89 million.
The company’s revenue for the year ended 31 December 2020 remained stable at £291.2 million compared to £291.5 million a year ago. It maintained its dividend payout for the year at 144p per share. It continued investment in South Africa for planting acreage as well as the company’s new Tanzania farm. It also said it was continuing trials in Kenya of avocados and blueberries.
Unilever Plc (LON: ULVR)
The FTSE 100 company is not just an FMCG giant but also behind Ben & Jerry’s chocolate ice creams, Magnum ice cream, and Cornetto. The shares of the company have a market capitalisation of £112,043.21 million and have a dividend yield of 3.45 per cent.
For the first quarter of 2021, the company’s underlying sales growth was 5.7 per cent, volume growth was 4.7 per cent, and price growth was 1 per cent. The quarterly dividend of €0.4268 per share commenced in May. Turnover in the food and refreshment segment stood at €4.7 billion and underlying sales growth was 9.8 per cent.