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Chocolate by the Numbers in California

California has led the nation in the number of chocolate and cocoa manufacturing establishments, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Sending chocolates to your sweetheart remains common practice on Valentine's Day, and many chocolate and cocoa manufacturing establishments where those candies come from are here in California.

The U.S. Census Bureau in 2009 counted 135 chocolate factories in California, which was the most in the country. Pennsylvania followed with 111.

Even locally, operates in Culver City () and operates in Redondo Beach and the gourmet confections are sold across the South Bay (see accompanying video.)

Nationwide 1,177 manufacturing establishments produced chocolate and cocoa products in 2009, employing 34,252 people, according to the census bureau.

The bureau also reported the total value of shipments in 2009 for firms producing chocolate and cocoa products added up to $12.6 billion.

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