There is an active black market in North Korea for Choco Pie, a marshmallow chocolate pie that is sold around the world.
Media reports state that North Korean workers at the Kaesong Industrial Complex first came across the pie when working for South Korean firms. The firm would pack a lunch box for the workers and include a Choco Pie as a dessert. The workers began taking it home with them and sharing it with their families, which later spread throughout the community.
According to news reports by CNN and the Daily Mail, the price of a Choco Pie on North Korea’s black market in $10, with some reports of the pie being sold for $23.
The pies are manufactured in South Korea at a cost of $0.50 per pie.
The average income for a typical North Korean worker is between $100 to $200 a month.
Source: “The chocolate treat so popular in North Korea that workers are buying it for up to a day’s wages on the black market from South,” Daily Mail, January 27, 2014.