DES MOINES, Iowa – It is estimated that Americans will spend $20.7 billion this Valentine’s Day.
The National Retail Federation estimates a breakdown in the following categories:
- Jewelry – $3.9 billion
- An evening out – $3.5 billion
- Clothing – $2.1 billion
- Flowers – $1.9 billion
- Candy – $1.8 billion
- Gift cards – $1.3 billion
- Greeting cards – $933 million
Chocolaterie Stam in Des Moines said it has over 6,000 fresh strawberries ready to be dipped for the holiday.
A team of four hand dips each fresh strawberry beginning at 2:00 a.m. on February 13th and 14th.
Co-Owner David Stam said the store only sells day-dipped strawberries. A way you can tell if a strawberry has been dipped for a day or two is to look at the chocolate border on a strawberry. If there is a gap between the fruit and chocolate, then it is a day or two old.
In addition to hand-dipped strawberries the family owned company sells heart-shaped chocolate boxes for the holiday.
Chocolaterie Stam originated back in 1913 in Europe. The original shop is still open in Holland. It started as a bakery in 1816, before changing over exclusively to chocolate in 1913.
Ton Stam brought the business over to America in 1978 and opened the first U.S. store. There are now Chocolaterie Stam shops in six states across the country.
The company has more than 50 chocolate flavors.
A dozen chocolate-dipped strawberries cost $29.95 with a half-dozen going for $15.95.