For the third consecutive fiscal cycle no major trade convoys have arrived from Federation space. Rumors are increasing that stockpiles of the luxury good from Earth are running low, and a chocolate shortage is expected by many economists. Fears over the growing possibility of a conflict between the UFP and the Tholians are increasing uncertainty about the future of Hydrans' supply of their new beloved treat.
While the Merchant's Guild is remaining silent on the matter, rumors abound about empty warehouses and cargoholds. Reports of price gouging are becoming common place in many outlying areas on a number of worlds.
The dearth of supply has sent prices skyrocketing leading to official concerns of increased smuggling. Though, according to one Ministry of Economics official who wished to remain anonymous, it is unlikely that there will be much of a government crackdown on chocolate runners since most officials, from frigate captain to reportedly the King himself, all want to get their sweet fix; "Most police will probably turn a blind eye or three to the slight reduction in tariff revenue in order to line their bellies with the sticky mocha goodness."
The Ministry of Health has recently been questioning whether chocolate may have a narcotic-like effect on Hydrans and has ordered researchers to begin investigating its biological effects. These recent riots are only fueling this question and leading many officials to begin considering regulation of chocolate ... if any more is to be found.
A number of entrepeneurs have begun attempting to manufactor synthetic chocolate, without much success. One such company is Gogle Corp., based on Hydramin, recently had a major incident resulting in one death at its research lab after a failed experiment at producing chocolate turned bad and began to eat employees. Royal Marines stationed nearby were able to subdue the rampaging sweet before the general population was endangered.
Back to Stories
This page Copyright © 2005 by GLV
SFB and all related materials are Copyright © 1990 by Amarillo Design Bureau.