Puratos introduced its new `Origins` line to manufacturers at the IBA trade fair in Germany this week through its subsidiary, Belgian chocolate maker Belcolade. The move is a bid to help luxury chocolate producers lure in the growing number of consumers who are coming to value transparency in cocoa sourcing.
As consumers become more aware of environmental issues and food quality concerns, there is a corresponding demand from purchasers to know the origin of their ingredients supplies, especially in the premium end of the market where the product frequently contains more of the cocoa bean.
According to Belcolade chocolate centre supervisor Stef Aerts each variety has a distinctive flavour depending on where the cocoa bean has been cultivated.
He told Confectionerynews: "These chocolate have very diverse flavours. Costa Rica has a very bitter taste, Ecuador a rougher texture, Peru has flavours of figs and Papua New Guinea tastes like whiskey."
While the high cocoa, and consequent high antioxidant content, would allow products to be marketed from a health platform, Aerts stressed that taste was the primary driving force behind the ingredients.
"It is like the flavours and tastes you can get in wines - the chocolate contains different, subtle hints," he added.
Belcolade's five types of chocolate, that hail from Peru, Papua New Guinea, Venezuela, Ecuador and Costa Rica, will be available to European manufacturers for use in fillings, moulds and injections.
The company claims the chocolate is flexible, versatile and has a medium viscosity, making it suitable for a wide range of applications in both the bakery and confectionery industries.