Barry Callebaut to open cocoa ‘Farm of the Future’ in Ecuador to aid R&D

“Technology and innovation are key to the future of food system evolution, providing opportunities for improving farmer productivity and resilience, combating agriculture climate change, and reducing the impact of the environment​,” Barry Callebaut said in a statement. Ecuador is the world’s third-largest cocoa producer and one of the fastest-growing cocoa origins, as well as the … Read more

How is Mars promoting living incomes for cocoa smallholders?

Mars Inc has been making chocolate for more than 100 years. However, the company recognises that there are some systematic issues in the cocoa supply chain that are yet to be solved. Smallholder farmers produce around 95% of global cocoa supplies. A large majority of these farmers don’t make a living income to provide for … Read more

Cacao-free chocolate alternative mimics the real thing, with 80% fewer CO2 emissions

Chocolate is one of the most consumed food products on the planet. Estimated to reach a total market size of $180bn by 2025, according to ResearchAndMarkets, chocolate is big business. But the chocolate industry has a ‘truly dark side’, according to London-based start-up WNWN (pronounced ‘win-win’) Food Labs. “People don’t really know about the problems … Read more

Free-deforestation agreement readies Peruvian cocoa for new European market regulations

The Cocoa, Forest and Diversity Agreement In the context of growing demand and new European regulations for deforestation-free products, the Sustainable Production Coalition (Coalición por una Producción Sostenible), a Peruvian multi-stakeholder platform, is promoting the country’s cocoa sector agreement: ‘The Cocoa, Forest and Diversity Agreement’. Members of Peru cocoa’s Sustainable Production Coalition. Pic: The … Read more

Fresh investments in Koa allow it to scale-up sustainable cocoa drive in Ghana

Founded in 2017, Koa is disrupting the cocoa industry through its innovative upcycling of the cocoa fruit. Koa is the first company in West Africa to have unlocked a new value chain around the so-far-discarded cocoa pulp. Working closely with cocoa smallholders, Koa reduces on-farm food waste around the cocoa fruit and generates additional farmer … Read more

‘Still a lot more to be done to protect and restore forests and improve cocoa farmer livelihoods’

Q: Why is deforestation an issue in the cocoa industry?​ Andrew Brooks​: The root cause is low farmer incomes. Most cocoa farmers have small amounts of land, so they can’t grow enough cocoa to fully support their families. To bring in extra income, they may resort to clearing more land to farm. That’s why we … Read more

New Fairtrade report highlights how cocoa sector can help farmers progress toward living incomes

Supported by a grant from the Open Society Foundations, the report, What Makes Co-operatives Work?, outlines recommendations for Fairtrade and the cocoa sector at large, developed after researchers conducted an in-depth study into the functions of s and heard feedback from two case study cocoa cooperatives in Ghana. The recommendations include proposals for how better … Read more

Scientists explore ‘moist incubation’ for ‘flowery’ dark chocolate

Chocolate production is a multi-step process that starts with freshly harvested cocoa beans. Researchers reporting in the American Chemical Society’s Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry have found that an alternative processing step called “moist incubation” results in a dark chocolate that tastes ‘fruitier’ and more ‘flowery’ than that produced by the conventional fermentation process. … Read more

MEPs write to the European Commission to beef up Cocoa Talks with an Economic Pact across the value chain

A group of MEPs from The European Parliament has called for the European Commission (EC) to enter into negotiations with Cote d’Ivoire following a proposal by the two largest cocoa producing countries to establish an Economic Pact for Sustainable Cocoa to address the entire Cocoa cocoa value chain. An Economic Pact that addresses the key … Read more