British university seeks ‘chocolate doctor’ to study sweet treat

Is there a doctor of chocolate in the house? Cambridge University in England is seeking a doctoral student to pursue what sounds like the sweetest job in the world: studying chocolate. The advert on the university’s website says an industrial, “fully funded 3.5-year Ph.D. studentship” is available for anyone willing to research the “fundamentals of heat-stable chocolate”. The goal is to identify ways of keeping chocolate-based food from melting in warm climates.

Theoretical aspects will require good mathematical skills. The supervisors have extensive experience in studying soft solids, including foods.

Job description on Cambridge University website

The project will be supervised by professor Malcolm Bolton of Geotechnical Engineering, professor Eugene Terentjev of Soft Matter Physics, and Dr Ian Wilson of Chemical Engineering. Cracking the melting code will be more of a challenge than it sounds, given that even the best-quality chocolate starts going soft around 34 degrees Celsius—3 degrees below the average human body temperature. The solution would help fatten the profits of the world’s top 10 chocolate companies, which last year posted confectionery sales exceeding US$85 billion.