Globetrotter: Chantal Coady of Rococo Chocolate

Chantal Coady ventures to exotic places as founder of Rococo Chocolate, but her worst-ever journey was crossing the English Channel.

by Elizabeth Anderson
Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013

How many business miles have you clocked up this year?

About 30,000 so far. That's mainly from flying to Grenada, where we have a cocoa farm, and Dubai, visiting a customer. I've also made a few trips to France, as we have a supplier of chocolate nuts based in Provence.

Favourite airport?

Airports are horrible places - I don't really like any of them. Train stations have far more character. St Pancras is a gorgeous building.

In flight - booze or no booze?

I have a glass of wine - it helps me relax. But they do say your taste buds don't really work in the air so there's no point drinking anything really expensive.

Do you like trains?

They're my favourite form of transport. You don't feel you're being herded like cattle, as you do going through airport security.

How do you source your chocolate?

We make all our chocolate from the cocoa beans grown on our Grenada farm. I have visited Venezuela, Trinidad, Cuba, India and Thailand to see how they grow cocoa but I found people are paid very little to work long hours in very hot conditions. Starting our own farm in Grenada avoided this.

MacBook or PC, BlackBerry or iPhone?

MacBook, iPhone and waiting for the new iPad to be delivered.

Worst hotel?

In Grenada, we once stayed in a wooden house for a week. There were holes in the floor and roof so snakes and insects kept coming in. But you look back with romantic memories once you're no longer covered in bites.

Worst-ever travel experience?

Coming back from a trade fair in Germany we took a ferry from France. There was a big storm and gale force winds, which meant the crossing took about three times longer. When we did get to Dover we couldn't get into the harbour and it took four tugs to pull us in. I eventually left Dover at three in the morning - nine hours late.

How do you cope with jet lag?

I try not to go anywhere for too short a time. To get off the plane and go straight to a meeting is my worst nightmare. I also drink lots of water and eat plenty of fresh food.

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