Puratos launches sustainable cocoa sourcing program in Papua New Guinea

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28 Jun 2018 --- Puratos is launching Cacao-Trace, a sustainable cocoa sourcing program in Papua New Guinea. The launch comes after the successful introduction of the program in Vietnam, Côte d’Ivoire and the Philippines.

The first step in the program was to adapt and standardize the cocoa bean fermentation process in about 60 locally-owned postharvest centers to ensure that they meet Cacao-Trace’s rigorous standards. By controlling the local fermentation process, Puratos was able to increase the quality of the cocoa beans significantly. The result is chocolate with an exceptional taste.

The program focusses on creating value for all through taste improvement. Improving fermentation via post-harvest centers in sourcing regions is key to delivering a superior taste for chocolate consumers all over the world and more income to the cocoa farmers. With the unique Chocolate Bonus, customers and consumers directly help cocoa farmer communities.

In addition to setting out fermentation guidelines and establishing quality controls over small batches (lot by lot, rather than by the container load), Puratos also adapted the drying systems. These allow PNG cocoa beans to achieve their full authentic flavor potential. This is important because the region typically uses a fire-drying process which produces a smoky taste, the company claims. 

Now that the basics of the program are in place, it is monitored and continuously improved in line with Cacao-Trace certification guidelines. In the six months that it has been running, the program has already had a very positive impact on the environment and the livelihoods of local communities. As a next step, the Chocolate Bonus will be implemented. This will improve the benefits for the communities even further. Finally, the center will be organically certified, resulting in a unique and sustainable organic chocolate.

As it rolls out, the Puratos Cacao-Trace sustainable cocoa sourcing program is proving, in each territory, that it is good for the future of chocolate, for the environment and the local cocoa growers, Puratos claims.

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