Sales Rise At Oregon Chocolate Festival

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ASHLAND, Ore. – The 10th annual Oregon Chocolate Festival wrapped up on Sunday with sold out workshops. While the festival brings many of the same vendors coming back each year, some say 2014 was their best year for sales.

Donna Holm has been making the trip up from Glide, Oregon down to Ashland, for the Oregon Chocolate Festival every year since 2010. She said one of the biggest differences this year is that people came to buy. “This year has been great, attendance I think is up, our sales are definitely up, and the fact that we introduced our new flavor lavender toffee and won the best chocolate candy award for that. So we’re kind of riding high on emotion” said Holm.

Organizers said it can be hard to compare the success from year to year because they are always inviting new vendors.

Karolina Wyszynska Lavagnino, the Director of Sales and Marketing at the Ashland Springs Hotel expressed her feelings about this year’s festival coming to a close. “We’ve had workshops sold out, and vendors said that their sales being higher than previous years, so I love hearing that,” Lavagnino said.

Local vendors, like Wendy Roberts of Mocha Mudd in Jacksonville, said higher attendance could be a sign of a stronger economy.

Roberts said “Hopefully it’s a reflection of the economy, and also people are allowing themselves to give themselves a little treat. You know everything that we have isn’t too much, it’s just a little something, something. And its enough where they feel like they’ve participated. They get to take something delightful home that they like, and it’s kind of a win, win for everybody that way.”

Whether they’re selling truffles, candy bars, or chocolate fender guitars, local and national vendors say, they’ll be back for the festival next year.