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World chocolatier will use the whole cacao for a fruitier taste

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One of the world's biggest chocolate makers, Barry Callebaut AG, is introducing a product line made from the whole cacao fruit, as opposed to just the beans, that will be marketed to chefs looking for a "fruitier" taste. Food and beverage giant Mondelez International Inc., whose brands include Cadbury and Toblerone, will be the first company to test-market the line.

[GENEVA] Move over whole grains. Here comes whole chocolate.

One of the world's biggest chocolate makers, Barry Callebaut AG, is introducing a product line made from the whole cacao fruit, as opposed to just the beans, that will be marketed to chefs looking for a "fruitier" taste. Food and beverage giant Mondelez International Inc., whose brands include Cadbury and Toblerone, will be the first company to test-market the line.

The so-called WholeFruit chocolate is the latest concoction from Swiss chocolatier Barry Callebaut, which is facing pressure to innovate and experiment with new products as competition in the global market heats up. Last year, the company debuted Ruby chocolate, a pink blend with a berry flavor that has been used in Nestle SA's KitKat bars. The move comes amid higher cocoa prices that have squeezed the profits of chocolate makers already facing headwinds as consumers shift toward healthier alternatives.

"We wanted to unleash the full power of the cacao fruit, and as we did that, we opened up a whole new world," Barry Callebaut Chief Executive Officer Antoine de Saint-Affrique said in San Francisco, where he introduced the product during a press conference with reporters.

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Barry Callebaut is marketing the line as a more sustainable approach to making chocolate, a possible selling point for environmentally conscious millienials. About 70 per cent of the cacao fruit is typically wasted in the process of making chocolate. Meanwhile, cocoa futures have risen 27 per cent in the past year. Mr De Saint-Affrique said the company was looking to create a product that was better for the environment without sacrificing quality.

"It's better in taste and it's natural," he said in an interview. "So you don't have to struggle between them."

Mondelez will make the first whole-fruit chocolate products under a new CaPao brand. They will include smoothie balls and jerky strips sold through retailers in Los Angeles. The WholeFruit chocolate line for artisan chocolate makers will be available from May. On Friday, Barry Cellbaut handed out tastings of two variations of the chocolate: Velvety and Bold. Both had an earthy flavor and were light on sweetness, the Bold sharper and the Velvety smoother.

Barry Callebaut isn't the first to try using more of the cocoa fruit. In July, Nestle SA said it found a way to make chocolate without adding sugar by using leftover pulp from cocoa.

 

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