A Henfield chocolatier is ‘proud’ to be shortlisted for a national award for his scrumptious creations.
The man behind The Raw Chocolate Company may not be a household name like Willy Wonka, but his innovative ideas and pure ingredients has garnered him a nomination in the FreeFrom Food Awards 2013.
Linus Gorpe commonly uses mulberries to bring an extra something to his chocolate that no other expert has thought to try.
“I was looking for a sweetener that was natural, because I don’t use regular sugar, and I was looking at dried fruit to use and a mulberry was the only thing that worked.”
With no business background, Mr Gorpe launched his company in 2006, and he had to learn everything from scratch, including how to mass produce chocolate and widely distribute it.
“I’m very grateful for throwing myself in. I have to understand the machine first before I read the manual.”
The chocolate master conjures up many of his creations from his dreams.
“I may try an idea and it doesn’t work at all, but that then becomes a very different product.”
The FreeFrom Food Awards 2013 recognises products that are gluten, wheat or dairy free, amongst other common allergens, like Mr Gorpe’s chocolate.
He said: “A sense of pride has welled up in my chest. I haven’t felt it before.”
Not driven by money, fame or success, Mr Gorpe refers to himself as a different kind of entrepreneur.
“What makes me excited is when I get personal emails from customers that say they have bought my chocolate bar and it changed their life - that gives me greater joy.
“I’m simply driven by passion and love.”
Shorlisted in the Raw Foods and Superfoods category, the winners will be announced on April 16 at the Royal College of Physicians in London.