Chocolate coins are coin-shaped candies made from chocolate. Milk, dark, and white chocolate are used to make coins, and they are typically foil wrapped in silver or gold. The surface of the coin is stamped with a pattern, and the foil may be decorated as well.
Some people like to give out chocolate coins at Halloween, as a symbolic gift of both money and chocolate. Typically, the coins are given out in small mesh bags or sealed containers, so that parents can be assured that the coins have not been tampered with. In communities where adulteration of Halloween candy is not a big concern, a household may simply offer a large bowl of chocolate coins, inviting children to pick out as many as they please.
In many cultures, chocolate coins are given out to young children to symbolize money and good fortune. At Chinese New Year, some parents give very young children these coins instead of money in red envelopes, under the assumption that the children will appreciate candy more at a young age. Jewish families also distribute the coins as Hanukkah gelt. Gelt is a Yiddish term for "money," and money often plays a role in Hanukkah presents. For younger children, chocolate coins are a symbolic form of gelt.
The idea of using chocolate coins to advertise or commemorate an important event is also widespread in the West. They are sometimes included in gift bags at weddings and other such social occasions, often with a specially embossed message. Advertisers may also use these coins to peddle their products, associating the company with a tasty experience in the mind of the consumer.
Depending on how they are to be used, there are a number of forms of chocolate coins available. If someone intends to order specially printed coins or labels, he or she should be aware that the company may require a large order to make it worth devoting their facility to the manufacture of the coins. Smaller chocolate manufacturers are usually more amenable to devoting the production line to the creation of special coins. They can also be purchased in bulk, or in pre-packaged gift containers. Dairy and nut sensitivities should be considered when purchasing and giving out chocolate coins, as many of them are made with dairy, and others are produced in facilities which also handle nuts.