Unlocking pulp potential: Nestlé invents 70 percent dark chocolate from cocoa fruit – with no added sugar
Using leftover material from cocoa plants as a sweetening ingredient is a “breakthrough idea”
16 Jul 2019 --- Nestlé has created a unique new chocolate made entirely from the cocoa fruit, using only the beans and pulp as ingredients. The new chocolate, to be launched in Japan this autumn, has been developed using a “natural approach” and patented technique which does not require adding any refined sugar. Nestlé hails its invention as a “breakthrough idea” with huge potential. The company continues to explore the possibilities of using the cocoa fruit in this way and is poised to innovate more products that provide a novel chocolate experience as more consumers seek natural and healthy options.
“We are just using one food source, the cocoa fruit, to make our chocolate,” a company spokesperson tells FoodIngredientsFirst.
“It’s the first time that we have been able to use more of the cocoa fruit to make chocolate, unlocking the pulp potential. This allows for a single-source chocolate, without adding refined sugar, but still imparting a delightful sweetness. It is a breakthrough idea, as cocoa pulp has not been used in this way before on an industrial scale. We are just using one food source, the cocoa fruit, to make our chocolate,” they explain.
The first product will be introduced in Japan through Nestlé’s KitKat Chocolatory. Further products in other countries will follow next year, through some of Nestlé’s most popular confectionery brands.
“We have only just started to explore the possibilities. Chocolatiers are beginning to understand more about how to bring out the flavors of this magical fruit, while farmers and manufacturers are becoming aware that 31 percent of the pod can be used versus 22 percent now,” the spokesperson continues.
The cocoa fruit contains cocoa beans and cocoa pulp. The pulp surrounds the beans, it is soft, sweet and white in color. Some of the pulp is used in the fermentation of the cocoa beans after they are harvested, but a significant proportion is usually removed and the value is lost. Until now it has not been used as an ingredient to naturally sweeten chocolate.
Nestlé has developed a natural approach, which allows it to extract the pulp and use it in chocolate with no compromise on taste, texture and quality. Until now, chocolate has been made with the addition of refined sugars. This patented innovation delivers a great tasting chocolate using only one ingredient – the cocoa fruit.
There is potential for Nestlé to use the same process to make milk or white chocolate.
Nestlé says this latest creation bolsters its leadership in the confectionery category by driving innovation and creating new, natural and exciting products. Nestlé was the first to bring Ruby chocolate to market in 2018 with KitKat, first in Japan and then across Europe.
The move also follows Nestle’s sugar restructuring breakthrough in 2018 when it launched a Milkybar with 30 percent less sugar. Researchers pioneered the “Milkybar Wowsomes” range, describing this as the first chocolate bar in the world to use Nestlé’s innovative sugar reduction technique.
The science behind the bar transforms the structure of sugar through a newly developed process using only natural ingredients and is inspired by candy floss (cotton candy). Experts created aerated, porous particles of sugar that dissolve more quickly in the mouth and on the tongue. This allows someone to perceive the same level of sweetness as before, but with much less of the ingredient and consuming less sugar.
By Gaynor Selby
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