See also: Chocolate; Cocoa; Chocolate Liquor
White chocolate originates from the cocoa (cacao) plant, but it is not 'chocolate.' According to the FDA, to be called 'chocolate' a product must contain chocolate liquor, which is what gives it the biter intense chocolate flavor (and color) to dark and milk chocolates.
White chocolate contains cocoa butter, milk solids, sugar, lecithin and flavorings (usually including vanilla). Cocoa butter is the fat from cocoa beans, extracted from the cocoa beans during the process of making chocolate and cocoa powder. Cocoa butter has very little 'chocolate' flavor.
Cocoa butter is one of the ingredients used to make real chocolate, it is gives chocolate the ability to remain solid at room temperature, yet melt easily in the mouth.
Cocoa butter is one of the most stable fats known, containing natural antioxidants that prevent rancidity and give it a storage life of 2 to 5 years. It is used for its smooth texture in foods (including chocolate) and in cosmetics and soaps.