Posted by: patenttranslator | November 28, 2013

How Many Calories Are There In One Section of Toblerone Chocolate?

A customer gave me a Toblerone bar yesterday (the large size). Things like that almost never happen to me because since I mostly translate patents and articles from technical and medical journals, my customers almost never come to my house. Typically, they don’t even live in the same state, sometime not even on the same continent. But this was a translation of a medical doctor’s diploma of a local resident, and maybe because it was the day before Thanksgiving, she felt like giving me some sweet Swiss chocolate before she left, and I appreciate it.

So this morning, when I was making myself my first cup of coffee, I decided to consult Nutrition Facts on the packaging because I urgently needed an answer to the burning question: Should I have only 1 section, or can I perhaps risk devouring 2 whole sections of the chocolate bar with my coffee?

The answer to my question would obviously depend on how many calories there are in 1 section of Toblerone chocolate bar.

But the thing is, just like about everything else, the so called Nutrition Facts on the things that we put in our mouth and chew on are designed to mislead and misinform us rather than inform us about the actual number of calories consumed in this manner.

Here is the information from the packaging:

Amount per serving: 1 third of the bar

Calories: 170

Calories from fat: 90

Total fat: 10 g (15%)

Saturated fat: 6 g (30%)

Dietary fiber: 1 g (3%)

Protein: 2 g

Vitamin A: 2%

Vitamin C: 0% (then why the hell do they need to include this information on the packaging?)

Calcium: 6%

Iron: 2%

etc., and so on, and so forth, there is a total of 16 items in the table describing the content of the sweet and nutritious (???) snack. By the time you are done reading all of that, you will have forgotten the question that you were asking, and you will have at least 2, probably 3 sections of the chocolate to go with your cup of coffee to brighten up your morning.

And that is of course the whole idea: the idea behind the information table is to ostensibly comply with the law, (which says that the customer has the right to know what he or she is eating), while at the same time making it impossible to figure out how many calories are being consumed in order to induce the customer to eat as much of the snack as possible.

The large chocolate bar, which was how my customer tipped me for my work, has 10 sections. But what is 1 third of 10 sections? 3.3333333333 sections, of course, or something like that. So how many calories are there in 1 section? Well, based on the Nutrition Facts, 170 calories divided by 3.5 equals 48.57 calories.

But unless you are Rain Man, you will need a calculator to figure out how many calories are there in 1 section of Toblerone chocolate, as I did.

Because thousands of people want to know how many calories are in 1 section of Toblerone chocolate every day, I got 16 answers on the first two pages when I ran a Google search with this question this morning. The calories count ranged from 41 to 43. Since this post will probably be listed there too, there will probably be at least 17 answers to this question on the Internet soon, and this post could eventually make it to the top of page 1 depending on how many people will read it, although this simple question will almost certainly never be answered in the “Nutrition Facts” on the packaging of the chocolate bar.


If you have read my rambling post about nothing up until this point, you have definitely earned the right to know how many pieces of chocolate I ate this morning:

Since I now know the precise amount of calories, I decided to have 2 (two) whole pieces with my two cups of coffee this morning, one with each cup (and hit the gym later today, even though it will be crowded today, although not nearly as crowded as tomorrow, the day after Thanksgiving).

It’s not of course just how many calories are contained in a section of Toblerone chocolate. If you read the information on just about anything provided for slices of cheese, salami, pieces of bread, or just about anything else that can be eaten, most of the time it is impossible to figure out a number without a calculator and a number of conversions. For example, in a package of 12 pieces of sliced cheese, the number of calories will not be provided per slice, but for a “half oz”, to make sure that the majority of people will not be able to figure out the actual number.

The manufacturers want us to remain uninformed, and it’s very easy for them to achieve just that: all they have to do is pay our politicians to make sure that we stay fat and stupid.

Nothing illegal about that.



  1. Uh-oh. I now feel this overwhelming urge to drop by your place with a bag of potato chips. In the meantime, you might want to read this
    The author makes some v good points about clarity, readability, etc.


    • Hi Chris:

      It’s interesting, the NYT blog post is 4 years old, and as far as I can tell, the “Nutrition Facts” are still as misleading as ever.

      (If you stop by me house, we will treat you to some home-made sushi).


  2. Who eats Toblerone, Steve? That’s Supermarket stuff for WalMart aficionados. If a client of mine were to give me a Toblerone, I’d take my translation back and kick him out of the house. It would have to be Lindt, at least! That’s the way the client would really show his appreciation for my work! Calorie-wise, though, it probably wouldn’t make any difference. And I doubt that the information on the Lindt packaging would be any more enlightening. But the taste, Steve, the taste!


  3. @Volkmar

    I’m afraid there is no Lindt here at Food Lion … but there is plenty of Toblerone next to the rack with women’s magazines (like “Women’s World”, “Cooking Light” and “People”) right next to the cash register!


  4. Toblerone is not Lindt, but it has its perks. I didn’t miss the point, anyway: one gym session every two pieces of chocolate? I’m impressed 😀


  5. “one gym session every two pieces of chocolate? I’m impressed”

    Well, not exactly.

    I was gonna go to the gym yesterday, but then I didn’t because I was proofreading a long German patent, 8 thousand words, and I had no energy after that, so I thought the chocolate would give me the energy to go today, but like I said, it’s gonna be crowded today and tomorrow because it’s Thanksgiving, so maybe I should go the day after tomorrow ….


  6. Oh, well, NOW I can relate!


  7. I have been known to count chips and pieces in a bag or cup to get useful info per piece for my nutritional database (don’t track all the time but still helps to know). Honestly, I need to drag out a calculator just to get info on a can of beans into useful form. What are we supposed to do with figures per serving, 3.5 servings per can? Sometimes it’s easier to multiply than divide, getting per can values. Then there’s one peanut-based protein roll (like liverwurst comes in) that gives figures for 5 slices, 21 slices per roll. Yeah, right. Like I can divide it into 21 slices. That’s worse than having to cut a pizza into thirds or sixths to match the label info.

    Concerning energy boosts: I was pleased to find Clif bars that have ten grams of protein plus 50 mg caffeine per bar: Cool Mint Chocolate and Peanut Toffee Buzz have kept me going through many proofreading sessions. Coffee drinkers may be puzzled, but us non-coffee drinkers (takes too long to boil water and find a clean cup) sometimes prefer to eat our stimulants. Can’t take Excedrin all the time (its 130 mg caffeine per dose puts me nicely on the ceiling, so the Clif bars can be quite effective).


  8. Here’s a different approach to calculate this mentally: If 1/3 of the bar has 170 kCal, the bar has 510 kCal and 1/10th of the bar (ie, one piece) has 51 kCal. You got a slightly different number due to rounding.

    I once got a box of Belgian chocolates from a client and just ate them all in a mildly messy 1,000+ kCal extravaganza.


  9. […] they go and Google and write “how many calories are there in one section of Toblerone chocolate?” and since it happens to be the title of a post I wrote, they end up on my […]


  10. […] translation. For example, a very popular post that I wrote just before Thanksgiving in 2013, titled “How Many Calories Are There in One Section of Toblerone Chocolate”, had 1,130 views in January and 705 views so far in February of this year, while another off topic […]


  11. I know the feeling. I wrote silly post called “What’s a penguin?” when this emoticon first became available on Facebook; it still ranks as one of my most popular posts.
    My answers to the question you posed?
    (a) Who cares? Each the whole bar, then drink as much coffee as you need to suppress your appetite for the rest of the day.
    (b) Do not read the nutrition facts; if you care about nutrition, then the things you eat will not have labels (fresh fruit and vegetables). There is no such thing as a Toblerone tree. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  12. lol


  13. Funny


  14. I thought this ladies ‘rambling’ was very good. Xx


  15. Thanks for the facts, it got to the first page and I enjoyed two pieces 🙂


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