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US company launches cheaper alternative to cocoa butter amid price spike

by Business News Report

 Blommer Chocolate, the largest cocoa processor in North America, launched on Tuesday a product it says it is a cheaper alternative to cocoa butter for confectioners that are struggling to keep up with rising costs for cocoa products. This will affect Nigeria and other producers from West Africa. Ghana and Ivory Coast earn substantial foreign exchange from cocoa exports. Cocoa prices rose 60 per cent in 2023 and are up 88 per cent more in 2024 so far, in a reaction to problems with the crops in the two largest producers, Ghana and Ivory Coast. Cocoa products such as powder and butter, used by chocolatiers and candy producers around the world, rose in tandem with the beans. Blommer said it will sell a cocoa butter substitute, which are made using other materials such as palm kernel and sunflower. The chocolate taste comes from the addition of cocoa powder or cocoa liquor.

“As the market value of cocoa butter continues to rise, it is exciting to have a product to offer our customers that provides an economically viable alternative without compromising on quality,” said the company’s vice president of sales and marketing, Scott Funk. Analysts believe that only demand destruction for chocolate and cocoa products would lead to a stabilisation of cocoa prices, since fresh production in the world from countries outside of Africa would still take two or three years. Blommer said the new coating product, called Elevate, provides a very similar result in terms of taste when compared to cocoa butter. It did not provide information on price comparison between the two.

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