Belgian opens chocolate factory in Romanian village

In a lovely example of life imitating art, a Belgian woman, who fell in love with Romania and moved to the country, has opened a chocolate factory in Crasna village in SW Romania, playing the Juliette Binoche role in ‘Chocolat’ for real. She uses local berries, fruits and milk, while the rest of the ingredients come from Brussels.

Marie Carels, a piano teacher in Belgium, opened the factory with an investment of EUR 150,000 after moving to the Romanian village 40 kilometers away from Targu Jiu city, according to Mediafax newswire.  Carels and her husband Boris Weyssow, a physics teacher at universities in Germany, Romania and Belgium, bought land in the village and built their house.

Marie hired five locals and taught them the craft of chocolate making. She learned Romanian and for a year had to struggle to get permits for the factory.

The investor also opened a store in Targu Jiu to sell the locally made chocolate and plans to open another factory for jam and canned fruits. Marie says that in Romania, she can produce the chocolate at lower prices than in Belgium. One kilo of chocolate costs RON 100.

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