Chocolate sales are booming this Valentine’s Day, as consumers stay close to home

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No reservations are required this Valentine's Day, as the pandemic makes romantic dinners out less likely. But chocolate will still be a key part of the celebration, as people express their love not only for their romantic partners but also close family and friends as well. Eighty-six percent of Americans are planning to purchase chocolate or candy for this year's Valentine's Day, according to data released from the National Confectioner's Association. "It will probably look a little different in 2021 than other years but certainly that acknowledgement of friends is still going to be very meaningful in this season," said Phil DeConto, vice president of category management and shopper insights at chocolate maker Ferrero, in an interview with CNBC. Spending this Valentine's Day is expected to be down, with consumers spending an average of $165 on gifts and celebrations this year, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics. That's down $32 from last year, largely due to people celebrating more...