I'm more a rock 'n roll and bottle of red kind of guy than one who spends his time visiting historical exhibitions. But if said exhibition is about chocolate then that's a whole different matter.
The State Library of South Australia today unveiled the Haigh's Chocolates Centenary Exhibition, which sounds well worth a visit. Particularly if, like me, you find no trip to Adelaide is complete without buying some product from Haigh's.
The exhibition Enjoyed for Generations – 100 Years of Fine Chocolate will be open until Sunday, July 26, and features original packaging, chocolate moulds, memorabilia, photographs and tales from a century of chocolate making.
It is one of Haigh’s Chocolates signature events during its year of centenary celebrations.
Many of the items on display, including chocolate boxes sold over 80 years ago, have only been discovered over the last three years, during which archivist Pam McAllister has been focused on collecting, organising and preserving the story of Haigh’s Chocolates.
Alister Haigh (yes, the company is still family-owned and run) said he and his family were proud to be sharing their story.
“The exhibition begins from the day that my great-grandfather Alfred opened the doors of the first store in the Beehive Building in May 1915,” he said.
“It affords a ‘behind-the-scenes’ glance of Haigh’s and what is important to the family and the business; our people, sustainable practices, artisanal skills and the making of chocolate from the raw cocoa bean. There is also an interactive element that enables visitors to see, learn about and smell the raw materials used in chocolate making.”
The director of the State Library of South Australia, Alan Smith, said he was delighted that Haigh’s had decided to open its archives.
“It is wonderful to see a multi-generational South Australian family business such as Haigh’s Chocolates value its history and tell its story in this way,” he said.
The travelling exhibition will also visit Sydney and Melbourne and highlights will then go on show in Jamestown and Mount Gambier, where Alfred Haigh lived and worked.
Haigh’s Chocolates is the largest family-owned ‘bean-to-bar’ manufacturer in Australia.