Chocolate Competence Center strengthens the heritage of the Swiss chocolate industry
The Lindt & Sprüngli Chocolate Competence Foundation contributes to safeguarding and developing Switzerland’s world-famous chocolate skills by setting up a new Chocolate Competence Center. The center not only focuses on research and development, but also on displaying and communicating know-how and expertise in chocolate making to the public, thereby strengthening Switzerland’s standing as industrial site.
The new center will be based in Kilchberg at the premises of Lindt & Sprüngli (Schweiz) AG near Zurich and is being realized by the Lindt Chocolate Competence Foundation, established in 2013. The main purpose of this charitable foundation is to safeguard Switzerland’s long-term position as a chocolate market place. The Chocolate Competence Center will act on one hand as platform to support and transfer industry specific know-how and training, thus fostering the next generation of chocolate specialists. Furthermore, a cooperation with universities and other higher education facilities will drive the research of new production and process technologies forward. On the other hand, an integrated chocolate museum serves as information platform for the public. The museum, which will offer a fascinating multi-media “chocolate experience”, gives visitors an introduction to the history and manufacturing of chocolate, as well as the chance to view a pilot plant. The Chocolate Competence Center also includes a “Chocolateria”, where creative chocolate fans can make their own chocolate. Visitors can also relax in the on-site cafeteria or buy some delicious souvenirs from the new Lindt shop.
“We are aware of the national and international importance of the Swiss chocolate industry and therefore have a long-term commitment to safeguarding Switzerland as a chocolate industry. As one of the important pioneers in Swiss chocolate making history,, we are determined to enhance the reputation of Swiss chocolate in the long-run and to progress the knowledge and expertise about chocolate manufacture, and share it with the world,” stresses Ernst Tanner, the foundation’s chairman.
Christ & Gantenbein as the architects
The winner of the competition to design the new center was the architects Christ & Gantenbein, Basel. This highly regarded architect’s office has national and international experience in building museums, and will realize the construction project for the new Chocolate Competence Center on behalf of the foundation. The building application was submitted to Kilchberg’s local building authority in December 2015.
The plans visualize a building with three stories above ground and two below ground, as well as a very spacious exterior design. The design of the Chocolate Competence Center is a striking counterpoint to the historic factory buildings of Lindt & Sprüngli (Schweiz) AG erected in 1899, opening a new dialogue between the contemporary and the traditional.