TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) – The pandemic has taken its toll on us all, but some people find solace in tasting their favorite candy. Candy sales make life a little sweeter this holiday season for the owners of Chocolate Depot in Trail Dust Town. Scott and Pascale Rail say they love what they do and have found ways to serve their customers during the pandemic. The couple have been selling their special Belgian chocolate, pies, fondant and caramel for over 16 years.
“Our pies and candies are all made by hand and in small batches. We are trying to do whatever we can to survive. We also make the desserts for the restaurant, which helps us a bit, ”said Scott Rail.
According to the National Confectioners Association, sales of chocolate and candies have increased by more than 5% and high-end chocolates have jumped more than 12% since the start of the pandemic. This is especially true for those who are trying to find joy in these difficult times. They also say that chocolate can improve your mood.
“Every night that we’re open we have a good crowd of people around the steak house and they all stop by and have something sweet on the way out,” said Scott Rail.
Rails have had to cut back on hours and days of operation from Thursday to Sunday, but they still receive a constant flow of customers. The store specializes in Belgian chocolate.
“With the pandemic, we rely on foot traffic from the steakhouses, the train, the shows,” Scott Rail said.
Scott says the entire sales orders on their pies have also been helpful. He’s using COVID-19 relief loans to help get things done. Tourism represents 60% of its activity. Experts say 91% of Americans celebrate the winter holidays with chocolate and other candy.
“We spend about 5 to 6 hours a day making chocolate. Hope everyone will come here to support us. There is a future to come, so we have to keep driving, ”said Pascale Rail.
Learn more about the Trail Dust Town chocolate depot at traildusttown.com/chocolate-depot.