What’s Inside Matters.™
Our Roots & Craft
As a second generation candy making family, our passion is creating craveable ways to combine modern tastes with our proud European heritage. Carefully crafted innovations come to life in our central coast California Chocolate Factory where we layer the most fun, flavorful ingredients we can find with rich, fair trade chocolate.
The result: a collection of snackable, shareable and giftable creations that you’re sure to enjoy.
Here’s to you and your amazingly good taste.
As a second generation family business, we have a strong commitment to our values; one of which is Responsibility: To the company, its people, customers, stakeholders and the world we live in. Our commitment extends to the individual growers of our cocoa and the delicate environment that supports our mutual bond.
Buying Fair Trade ensures that you’re not only getting quality products, you are also helping to provide a better return to the people and families who grow our cocoa. Your everyday purchases can help farmers advance and improve their growing practices and subsequently the quality and value of their crop, provide safe work conditions, and invest in their communities to improve the lives of their families. In addition, Community Development Premiums are invested in much-needed projects like schools, wells, and roads. Fair Trade also helps protect the environment through sustainable farming practices and by restricting GMOs and harmful pesticides. Child labor is also strictly prohibited, helping kids stay in school and build bright futures. Look for the Fair Trade Certified Cocoa™ logo on all Marich brand single serves, pouches and gift boxes.
Marich has been actively engaged in environmental initiatives for nearly our entire time in business. This goes back to our founding and efforts in industrial waste reduction such as cardboard recycling have been part of our practices for decades. Each year we review and seek ways to improve how we do business and remain a responsible company that we can all be proud of. Each year we review our impact on the environment and seek ways to improve. The following are examples of the changes we have made over the years
As a company, we have always been keenly aware of the impact of the choices we make regarding our energy usage. In the construction of our new facility in 1998, we employed the latest techniques and have continued to take advantage of new technology with each expansion and improvement.
The roof is a lightly colored reflective roof system to reduce the heat buildup on the building and the entire interior roof is insulated with high-efficiency insulation thereby reducing energy usage in cooling.
All windows are high-performance glass to add to the overall energy efficiency of the building.
Production and office areas are fluorescent lighting with all office and warehouse areas being sensor aided so the lights are only on when needed.
The cooling for the main warehouse is accomplished using the same systems for production. Since A/C units of this nature are more efficient as they approach peak usage, this is in the best interest of the operation and efficiency.
Our new warehouse was outfitted with 4 high-efficiency A/C units so we can use only what we need.
Our forklifts are electric and have been since our founding to reduce fuel usage and pollution both in and outside our facility.
We’ve engaged with our local utility company to perform an energy use assessment. We monitored the effects and over the 30 day monitoring period reduced our energy usage by 10.8% on average. The knowledge gained from this continues to be used and we are studying other ways to reduce our annual energy consumption.
We converted over 50 high bay warehouse lights over to sensor aided fluorescent lights further reducing our energy usage.
Renewably Powered – In partnership with Monterey Bay Community Power, 100% of the electricity used to power our company is derived from renewable, carbon free sources: large hydro, solar + storage, and wind.
The vast majority of our ingredients are sourced from suppliers right here in CA for example:
Our chocolate comes from Guittard Chocolate Company 80 miles away
Our milk and dairy products are from CA dairies
We source all of our Almonds, Pistachios, and Raisins from Central Valley California growers
Our Cherries, Blueberries and many other dried fruits come from West Coast suppliers from LA to Portland
Our sugars and starches come to us from the Bay Area 75 miles away
The majority of our corrugated boxes, labels, and printed boxes are made right here in CA with 100 miles of our facility
Marinus van Dam grew up in his native Holland during World War II. To help support his family, at the age of 15 Marinus found a job at a local candy factory. His job was to take a sheet of metal and scrape up the candy that had become stuck on the factory floor. He tirelessly worked the 4 floors of the building every day.
His endless curiosity and work ethic caught the attention of management and he was selected to attend Candy Technology School paid for by the company (very progressive for 1945!) This pattern repeated until he learned every aspect of candy making from the finest hand-made chocolates to jellies, caramel, taffy, nougat, gum, mints, licorice and more.
In 1957, Marinus left Holland to come to America where he heard the streets were paved with gold. After working for a small confectionery company in Ohio, he heard of a larger company in California that was hiring so off he went to join the Wild West. To his great fortune, he landed the job and spent the better part of his career at that company helping to build it into one of the finest companies in the US.
After a lifetime of working for others, he felt it was time to venture out on his own. In 1983 Marinus and several partners founded Marich Confectionery Company. We (Brad and Troy pictured left) started working at the company sweeping floors and cleaning before being granted the right to learn the craft. Our dad’s philosophy was, “You cannot be a leader if you do not understand the job from the ground up. Once you learn how to keep a plant clean, you can learn how to make candy. ”Being old-school Dutch, our Dad put us to the tasks of cleaning toilets, sweeping, making boxes and whatever had to be done. Over the years we both learned the art of fine candy making alongside our Dad. True to family business form, we also learned to weld stainless, sweat copper, install equipment, electrical work and all the types of things that have to be done to keep a business running.” Anyone reading this that works in a family business is smiling…you know what we’re talking about!
After 35 years we continue to enjoy building our business together and yes, we still eat chocolate. Honestly, rarely a day goes by that we don’t eat at least a little. If you are a candy maker, you have to love candy and you have to be a perpetual kid. Work should be fun; if it’s not, it is a miserable way to spend the better part of your day.
– Brad van Dam, CEO and President
– Troy van Dam, COO and Executive Vice President
To minimize our contribution to the waste stream, we employ various measures to manage incoming materials as well as minimize the waste impact from what we produce and ship.
First off, all of our corrugated and printed packaging cartons are recyclable.
We have recycling containers throughout the facility for aluminum cans and plastics.
We recycle the corrugated boxes and paper from production resulting in a dramatic reduction in industrial waste.
Over a decade ago we converted our white bleached corrugate cartons to non-bleached material with typically 30% recycled content. This conversion to non-bleached materials goes all the way down to the paper towels used throughout our facility
We discontinued the use of all Styrofoam products by converting to air filled pillows for protection in shipping of samples and from Styrofoam panels for warm weather shipping we switched to smaller waste impact insulator bags.
Plant a Tree
Our dad gardened as a hobby and loved plants and trees especially Redwood trees. Trees are nature’s natural carbon scrubbers and since our dad was big on plants we planted lots of them at our new facility, including his favorite redwoods.
When we built our facility here in Hollister, we planted over 75 trees on the 5 acres we occupy along with ribbons of shrubs and flowering plants that can get by on little water once established.
We will continue to discover and employ future technologies to better our business, aim to tread lightly and leave the world a better place for future generations.