Published date 26 March 2024

How the chocolate Easter egg was made in the West of England – Regional Mayor to residents: time to celebrate “sweet” history

Metro Mayor Dan Norris visits National Trust property Prior Park in the West of England Combined Authority area, March 2024.

“Let’s be proud of our inventive chocolate history”, says West of England Mayor Dan Norris. The regional mayor wants residents tucking into their chocolate eggs to know that this iconic Easter treat was first created in our region.

151 years ago, Bristol chocolate company J. S. Fry & Sons hit upon a winning idea. They designed the very first commercial hollow chocolate Easter egg. The original Fry’s factories were in the heart of Bristol city centre, between Union Street and The Pithay. In 1923 the factory moved to Keynsham, while the Fry family lived in Frenchay.

Fry’s hit upon the idea of making chocolate by mixing cocoa fat with cocoa powder and sugar. This made a smooth paste which could be poured into egg moulds, producing the hollow chocolate egg sold across the country, and the world for the past 150-plus years. Today, a staggering 180 million chocolate eggs are purchased for Easter every year.

Dan Norris said: “This Easter, West of England residents can feel pride in our sweet chocolate-making history.

“Everyone can learn more about this visiting the many museums we have locally, and, of course, there are plenty of shops to buy delicious Easter sweet treats as well.

“Let’s celebrate the chocolate Easter egg - an idea hatched in our very own West of England region.”

This year, the Mayor has been calling on all residents to support local good causes - in keeping with Fry’s Quaker traditions - including gifting chocolate eggs to foodbanks accepting these as donations.

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