Cargill expands its chocolate couverture range
Cargill announced that it has expanded its Veliche line with two Signature Origins dynamic dark couverture chocolates, making it the only gourmet chocolate supplier to bring the intense flavors of El Salvador and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to chefs around the world.
“In developing our new Signature Origins products, we have sought out the cocoa-producing regions of the world to offer chefs chocolates with unique flavor profiles that really stand out from current gastronomic offers”, explains Wim Bastiaens, Director of Gastronomy and the distribution of Cargill. “The result is our Usulután 65 Signature Origin dark couverture chocolate from El Salvador and our Okapi 65 Signature Origin dark couverture chocolate from the Democratic Republic of the Congo – gourmet chocolates that will surprise and delight consumers’ palates.
To make El Salvador’s unique flavors accessible to chefs, Cargill has teamed up with third generation cocoa farmers at Hacienda San José Real de la Carrera, drawn to their flavorful cocoa beans infused with complex, nutty, fruity notes. and floral.
Additionally, Cargill discovered the Okapi Co-operative in the Democratic Republic of Congo, which produces intense herbaceous cocoa with flavors of spices and dried fruits. These unique cocoa beans will be grown exclusively for Cargill and used to make its Okapi Signature Origins dark chocolate couverture.
Along with new product launches, Cargill unveiled a revamped website and new reclosable and recyclable packaging that showcases the various chefs and farmers behind the company’s gourmet chocolate. Improved packaging is part of a growing commitment to the environment.
“Since its introduction to the gourmet market in 2016, sustainability has been a pillar of the Veliche brand,” says Bastiaens, noting that most Veliche cocoa and chocolate products are sustainably sourced from Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana. , and all are certified by the Rainforest Alliance. “Five years later, we are still the only gourmet line to offer 100% sustainably sourced cocoa and chocolate. Now, we take it a step further by unveiling a program designed to support entrepreneurship in our cocoa countries of origin.
Cargill is investing $ 950,000 (EUR 800,000) in a new Veliche-backed Ivory Coast sustainability initiative that aims to empower cocoa-producing households to become ‘agripreneurs’ and run their farms like farmers. companies. The program, implemented through its partner, the non-profit international development organization TechnoServe, includes individual coaching on good agricultural practices, provides support for the diversification of farm and non-farm income and entrepreneurship training for women and young people.
“When we invest in sustainability initiatives, we also prepare our clients for success,” says Bastiaens. “Today’s consumers, concerned about society and the environment, increasingly favor sustainable and ethical products. With the Veliche Sustainability Program, we are encouraging our industry partners to join us, invest in cocoa growing communities and, at the same time, make their own brands more sustainable.
Cargill’s actions to expand its Veliche range and reaffirm its commitment to the gourmet chocolate space come just six months after announcing its investment in additional capacity at its gourmet production facility in Kalmthout, Belgium, in 2020. The move follows a series of investments in the gourmet segment, including the acquisitions of the global chocolate business of Archer Daniels Midland Co. in 2015 and Smet decorations in 2019.