OESTERREICH / Riegersburg / 2019 / Josef Zotter, Zotter Schokoladen Manufaktur...© Heinz Stephan Tesarek / www.heinztesarek.com

OESTERREICH / Riegersburg / 2019 / Josef Zotter, Zotter Schokoladen Manufaktur...© Heinz Stephan Tesarek / www.heinztesarek.com

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Zotter Chocolate Manufactory

Zotter Schokoladen Manufaktur is a Fairtrade chocolate manufacturer, carrying out […]

Zotter Schokoladen Manufaktur is a Fairtrade chocolate manufacturer, carrying out the entire chocolate production process on-site: from roasting cocoa beans on rollers to grinding in the conche.

Annually, around 300 tonnes of cocoa beans and 150 tonnes of cocoa butter are turned into 600 tonnes of chocolate, served in the form of more than 400 varieties of chocolate, pralines, drinking chocolate, and other types of chocolate.


In 1987 Josef Zotter and his wife Ulrike opened the Zotter Konditorei confectionery in Graz, southern Austria, and began producing chocolates in the back room of their confectionery in 1992. Josef created hand-scooped chocolate with layered centers and a new 70-gram bar without the customary cubic break-off shape. Two years later art designer Andreas H. Gratze designed artful wrappings and named the chocolate bars.

Zotter opened the Zotter Chocolate Manufactory in 1999. The manufactory was converted into a bean-to-bar production house in 2007. Zotter also launched the Chocolate Theatre where visitors can experience chocolate production from beginning to end.

In 2015, Zotter ranked among the world’s best 25 chocolate producers from 70 countries.

Bean to bar

With the bean-to-bar production line Josef Zotter, as one of the very few high-class chocolatiers in the world, carries out all of the production processes for the creation of chocolate in-house: from the roasting of the cocoa beans on rollers to the classic grinding in the conche, everything is made on-site with the greatest of finesse. Moreover, Zotter is one of the few chocolate makers that produces bean-to-bar in 100% organic and fair quality!

The creative center for chocolate extends over 5,200 square meters. This is because the transformation of the bean into chocolate is a very complex process. Zotter treats each type of cocoa individually by matching the process to the character of the cocoa. This is dependent upon the peculiarities of each cocoa type – the subtleties, the extravagances, and the aromatic origins of chocolate.

Zotter is and will remain at the top of the world-best chocolate manufacturers and by far the most innovative chocolatier of all.

Chocolate – the reference standard

Variety and creativity

Josef Zotter has re-invented chocolate: Hand-scooped Chocolates are basically giant bonbons. Featuring wonderful flavour combinations and distinctive, artistic sleeve designs, Hand-scooped Chocolates have become iconic. They’re filled chocolate miracles consisting of several layers, brushed onto long lanes – one on top of the other – by hand. Hand-scooped Chocolates are available in more than 100 flavours, all invented by Josef and his daughter Julia Zotter.

Zotter produces a total of around 500 different flavors: the range includes the iconic Hand-scooped Chocolates, pure single-origin chocolates, drinking chocolates, pralines, couverture,s and handmade organic bonbons.


Zotter Bean-to-Bar logo

100% BEAN-TO-BAR: Zotter chocolates are produced starting from the bean in the bean-to-bar chocolate factory.

Everything is made in-house, from the first step to the last. The roasting, milling, and conching is done in small batches, adjusted to the individual cacao bean. Not unlike wine, each cacao variety has its own very distinct flavor, shaped by the terroir of its growing region. Sometimes that flavor is nutty, sometimes it has more of a flowery bouquet like the Ecuadorian beans or more citrus notes like the beans from Madagascar. All Zotter chocolates contain only the best raw materials. They use fine flavor cacao bean varieties as opposed to ordinary bulk cocoa, cocoa butter is exclusively used instead of palm oil, raw cane sugar, milk from alpine farms, and genuine Bourbon vanilla, the second most expensive spice in the world after saffron. The Austrian location employs around 200 people who produce fresh chocolate every day.

For more information: Bean-to-Bar Production

Organic + Fair + Green

WFTO member logo

The entire business is Fair Trade verified. Zotter is a member of WFTO – the World Fair Trade Organization, which is the umbrella organization for global fair trade. The WFTO monitors business compliance with the 10 principles of fair trade like transparency, respect for the environment, the payment of fair prices, and no use of child labor among others.

For more information visit www.wfto.com

EU-Organic logo

All the ingredients for the chocolate come from ORGANIC cultivation. The number of the organic board of control serves as identifying information. ORGANIC control number: AT-BIO-402

The protection of the environment is a very important aspect of  Zotter’s corporate philosophy. Their environmental protection and environmental measures are  ISO 14001 and EMAS certified. EMAS-certified companies are recorded in a Europe-wide register and are regularly checked and monitored on a national level by environmental experts approved by the environment department. Here you can find Zotter‘s environmental declaration in German online. 

Family business

The factory, founded long ago in one of the stables at Josef Zotter’s parents’ farm, has become a competency center for chocolate. The whole family is working there with passion, Josef, Ulrike, and their children Julia and Michael, apart from Valerie, because she is still in school.

Family Zotter: Josef, Ulrike, Julia, Michael, Valerie

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