The French supplier launched new products at a recent event in London attended by ConfectioneryNews.
The company says its 50% Brazilian milk chocolate has enough cocoa to taste authentic chocolate flavors and could act as a gateway to get people eating dark chocolate.
The firm adds that it working on projects in Jamaica after market deregulation and has introduced a 70% Jamaican dark chocolate couverture.
Brazil – Cuveé de Limeria
Valrhona’s purchasing & supply chain director Jean-Francois Dargein said of the firm's 50% Brazilian milk chocolate couverture ‘Cuveé de Limeria’.
"It's a high cocoa percentage for a milk chocolate... It's a way to bring people to the flavor of cocoa and chocolate.
“Traditionally milk chocolate has been made with a lot of milk and sugar. It's very sweet and it doesn’t have the taste of cocoa.
“It’s a way to bring people from bad milk chocolate - the very sweet and milky type - step-by-step to a milk chocolate that's tasty and then maybe to a dark chocolate"
Valrhona sources the cocoa for the couverture from a plantation in the North of Brazil in Bahia.
Valrhona's existing food service customers will have first refusal on the chocolate as there is a limited supply, but it is expected to open up to chocolate confectioners based on market demand.
"The idea of the ‘Cuveé de Limeria’ is very limited quantities,” said Dargein. “We decided to separate it from the other part of the production just to make something very special."
Renewed focus on Jamaica
Valrhona claims to have used the same philosophy for newly launched Jamaican 70% dark chocolate couverture ‘Morant Bay Cuvée’.
The company recently signed a partnership with a cocoa plantation in Jamaica after the national government loosened its control of the cocoa market.
"We've always been working with Jamaica... but now the organization of the cocoa trade in this country means we can think about new projects,” said Dargein.
"We feel very much more free,” he continued. “Now we have the possibility to have a direct relationship with the producer. It gives us a much more hope for the future to develop much more activity with this island."