Since Anthony Matulewicz was a child, he said that chocolate was what made him happy. So, in 2015 he built Mozna Chocolates, a chocolate factory in Hidalgo.
As the pandemic continues to impact the nation, Matulewicz said his role in the community as an entrepreneur remains the same: to spread joy with chocolate.
“Giving chocolate is like giving a smile, and that is why I got into this business,” the McAllen native said.
Starting last Wednesday, Mozna Chocolate has been delivering gifts of their assorted chocolate bars to local nursing homes and assisted living facilities all across McAllen. That morning, they dropped off some of their delights to McAllen Transitional Care Center, Grand Terrace Rehabilitation and Health Care, Alfredo Gonzalez Texas State Veterans Home, and Retama Manor Nursing Care.
“In times of crisis, it brings the best and worst in people,” Matulewics said, who has also been an immigration attorney for 28 years. “So I am trying my best to bring a little bit of the best in people.”
Matulewicz said that he had the idea to deliver gifts of chocolate to nursing homes last week. Production for the gifts started on Friday, and with his wife, Rosario Matulewicz, who works in South Texas College, began packaging them on Monday.
He noted that like many business owners, he’s worried about how the pandemic will impact his company — but that was not going to stop him from showing his gratitude for health care workers, and support for the elderly.
“Because if I am not in the trenches and I am under all this stress, I would hate to see how much stress the people that are in the trenches are going through,” he said. “It’s my way of saying thanks. The city has been good to me, this community has been good to me, so it’s a very small way of saying thank you.”
When asked how long he will be gifting and delivering chocolate, he said: “For as long as our resources and production will let us, we will try to give out as much as we can for as long as we can.”
Some flavors that Mozna Chocolate offers include coconut, sapodilla and orange. The company only uses single-origin cacao beans, ensuring that none of their products were made with child labor or slavery.
“I am trying to give a smile to somebody, that’s it. If I am able to give them a smile for even just 10 seconds, I have done my job.”