Location of Bilsa Biological Station within Mache-Chindul Reserve in Esmeraldas Province, northwest
Location of Bilsa Biological Station within Mache-Chindul Reserve in Esmeraldas Province, northwest
link to the Kickstarter page
Chocoladeliefhebbers en fijnproevers kunnen hun smaakpapillen weer strelen tijdens dit unieke evenement rondom origine chocolade. Op 23 oktober 2013 zal voor het tweede jaar het Origin Chocolate Event plaatsvinden in het Koninklijk Instituut voor de Tropen in Amsterdam.
Chocolade: van snoepgoed tot volwassen product
De opkomst van de kleinschalige chocolademakers heeft het product chocolade op een hoger niveau gebracht. Deze chocolademakers verwerken bijzondere variëteiten cacaobonen tot chocolades en weten de meer dan 700 aroma’s in dit complexe product optimaal tot uiting te brengen. Zij behoren tot de prijswinnaars van de gerenommeerde ‘Academy of Chocolate’ en de ‘International Chocolate Awards’.
Werd chocolade voorheen als snoep gezien, hier ervaart u chocolades die zich kunnen meten met de beste soorten koffie en wijnen. Op dit evenement presenteert de crème de la crème van de chocoladewereld haar chocolades en de boeiende verhalen erachter. Onder andere Ecuador, Vietnam en Madagaskar zijn vertegenwoordigd maar ook Kees Raat uit Amsterdam. U proeft zoete en hartige chocolate tapas, de mooiste foodpairings met wijnen, speciaalbieren en thee. Er worden Masterclasses gegeven en Het NH Tropen Hotel biedt tegen een prijs van 39,50 een 3-gangen chocolade diner aan in een van haar prachtige zalen.
Kortom, een evenement waarvan u verrijkt en verkwikt door de theobromine huiswaarts keert.
Waarom het Origin Chocolate Event?
Erik Sauër, importeur van origine chocolades en medeorganisator van het Origin Chocolate Event: ”Origine chocolades zijn gemaakt van cacaobonen uit één specifieke regio, soms zelfs van één specifieke soort. Dit zijn échte streekproducten, met een eigen smaakpallet, die zich onderscheiden van de reguliere chocolades.
Deze chocolades zijn relatief nieuw op de markt en wij willen fijnproevers en chocoladeliefhebbers hiermee bekend maken.
Wat valt er te beleven?
Presentaties en proeverijen van ’s werelds bekendste chocolademakers: Santiago Peralta (Pacari), Bertil Akesson (Akessons), Vincent Mourou & Samuel Maruta (Marou), Philipp Kauffmann (Original Beans), Sepp Schönbächler (Felchlin), Niklaus Blumer en Pascal Wirth (Idilio), Diego Badaro (Amma) en Mikkel Friis Holm (Friis Holm).
Bijzondere ontmoetingen met de meest vooraanstaande chocolade experts ter wereld: Martin Christy (Seventy% Club en International Chocolate Awards), Maricel Presilla (Gran Cacao, chefkok, schrijfster), Clay Gordon (oprichter van http://www.thechocolatelife.com), Anna Laven (cacao expert Royal Tropical Institute).
Verleidende proeverijen van bijzondere cacaosoorten en verfijnde chocolade door o.a. Chocoweb (www.chocoweb.nl) en chocoladewinkel Chocolátl
Exclusieve culinaire hoogstandjes van toppatissiers en chocolatiers: Kees Raat (Metropolitan Deli), Geert Vercruysse (Patisserie Vercruysse) en Alexandre Bellion (Chocolaterie Alexandre).
Wijn-, bier-, whisky- en spijscombinaties met origine chocolade.
Een exclusief ‘origine chocolade’ diner met een bijpassend wijnarrangement.
Meer informatie over tijden, sprekers en tickets op http://www.originchocolate.eu
Meer over Origin Chocolate
Origine chocolades zijn chocolades van cacao uit een specifieke regio. Kwaliteit, duurzame concepten, biologisch en direct trade zijn kenmerken van de chocolade in deze groeiende markt. Door de beste kwaliteit cacaobonen te gebruiken en zeer veel aandacht en zorg te besteden aan het productieproces, worden de meest aromatische chocolades gecreëerd. Tijdens het evenement wordt de passie van het fijnproeven gecombineerd met het op de kaart zetten van de speciale origine chocolade.
Koninklijk instituut voor de Tropen
Het Koninklijk Instituut voor de Tropen (KIT) is een onafhankelijk kennisinstituut op het terrein van duurzame ontwikkeling, gezondheid, cultuur en kennisoverdracht. Het KIT helpt bedrijven, culturele instellingen, ontwikkelingsorganisaties, overheden en vele andere organisaties in binnen- en buitenland hun doelen te bereiken met hoogwaardige en bruikbare kennis. Er is er veel expertise aanwezig over duurzame cacao en de internationale cacaosector. De samenwerking met het Origin Chocolate Event is een voorbeeld van de overdracht van de ‘know how’ in de cacao industrie naar verschillende doelgroepen.
NH heeft de ambitie om één van de meest maatschappelijk verantwoorde bedrijven te zijn in de gastvrijheidsindustrie. Het aanbieden van producten en gerechten met een duurzaam karakter, dat is waar NH Hotels voor gaat. Daarom steunt NH Tropen, als gastheer in het KIT, het Origin Chocolate Event.
The term revolution has two meanings in English. It can signify an abrupt change in a system, such as a system of governance, production, or consumption, and it can also mean a full cycle, such as the turn of a wheel.
The chocolate industry, that is the cultivation, trade, production and consumption of chocolate, is undergoing a revolution. Premium chocolate producers are raising the quality standards of chocolate, and developing new trade links that offer cocoa producers an alternative to the extreme instability of the commodities market.
However, the cycles of capitalism threaten the sustainability of premium chocolate. As happened in the organics industry, large corporations could consume the smaller producers and apply the principles of industrialisation to drive the high price of premium chocolate down. The potential for premium chocolate to be a revolution of change, and not just another iteration of late capitalism, lies with chocolate connoisseurs.
Their appreciation for the artisan, and subsequent education of consumers, distinguishes premium chocolate from mass-produced chocolate by imbuing it with the value of authenticity. It is this value that may save premium chocolate and empower it to be a true agent of change within the cocoa industry.
THE CURRENT STATE OF CHOCOLATE
Most of the chocolate sold in supermarkets today contains barely any cocoa at all. In the US, a chocolate bar need only be 10% cocoa in order to use the name, and what cocoa exists within these mass-produced bars is of the poorest quality.
The world’s insatiable desire for this sweet treat resulted in aromatic native varieties of Theobroma Cacao, such as Criollo, to be pulled out of the earth and replaced with Forastero. The beans from this plant are bitter and astringent, and lack the
complex flavours of native species, but they have the advantage of being hardy and offering higher yields.
Large amounts of sugar, imitation vanilla and dairy products are used to mask the bitter taste of these beans. In the EU, up to 5% of the cocoa butter can be substituted with cheaper vegetable fats including palm oil, karate, illipe, sal, kokum and mango-kernel oil.
The cocoa butter that naturally constitutes approximately 55% of a cocoa bean can be sold for use in cosmetic products at a much higher price than it could be sold in a chocolate bar.
Essentially, everything is done in the production of a mass-produced chocolate bar to reduce its cost to the producer, and to the consumer.
cocoa tree in the rainforest Costa Rica (picture Nahua)
CENTRALISATION OF CHOCOLATE MANUFACTURING
This separation of chocolate production into two parts — first the manufacturing of semifinished cocoa products such as liquor, extracted cocoa butter and couverture, and second the manufacturing of chocolates for consumption — occurred as part of a rapid concentration of the chocolate industry which began shortly after World War II. The age of innovation and invention inspired by the Industrial Revolution ended, and was replaced by one of acquisition and merger.
The Cadbury company bought J.S. Fry and Sons, and was itself merged with the soft drink giant Schweppes. Swiss giant Nestlé bought Italian brands including Perugina who make the popular chocolate Baci. Kraft acquired Terry’s when they bought United Biscuits, and merged it with a chocolate company they already owned called Suchards to create Terry’s Suchards.
In addition to these chocolate companies consuming and absorbing smaller companies, international grain giants such as Archer Daniel Midlands (ADM) and Cargill entered the chocolate industry, corporations with enormous international shipping, storage and supply-chain infrastructure. By 2005 more than half of the world’s beans were transformed into chocolate by just four companies: ADM, Cargill, Barry Callebaut and Nestlé. This centralisation wrested control of the cocoa industry from the countries who produce it to the countries who consume it.
LIBERALISATION OF THE COCOA TRADE
It was the liberalisation of the cocoa industry in the 1980s and 1990s that provided the perfect conditions for the centralisation of chocolate manufacturing. As Carol Off notes, in her detailed account of exploitation of cocoa workers Bitter Chocolate, Investigating The Dark Side Of The World’s Most Seductive Sweet, the abolition of government subsidies in cocoa producing countries allowed heavily subsidised American companies to move in and create a monopoly, barring entry to
indigenous companies. Geographer Niels Fold agrees that most local companies have been pushed out of the cocoa business. Those that survive do so as subsidiaries of the large multinationals, or they manage the transport of beans from plantation to port, from which point they hand them over to “exporters with international linkages and expertise.”
Prior to this restructuring of the global cocoa industry, marketing boards, and other organisations established by producing nations, protected farmers from the extreme price volatility of the commodities market. One way in which they offered protection was by restricting the export of cocoa to licensed companies or state controlled bodies. These government and semi-government agencies bought reserves of cocoa beans when the market price was low and stored them in order to
reduce supply and lift prices. When the market price increased to extremely high levels, they sold the reserves in controlled batches to keep the price of cocoa from escalating beyond the purchasing abilities of cocoa buyers. The profits of these actions were put in a stabilisation fund which covered losses if the market price dropped too low, and were used to fund the organisations themselves.
These bodies were dismantled as a condition of Foreign Aid, in the form of development loans from The World Bank and The International Monetary Fund (IMF). In order to secure a loan, countries were forced to remove all government intervention in a nation’s cocoa trade, including loans and subsidies. Called Structural Adjustment Programs (SAP), these neo-liberal economic measures aimed to cut the expense of the marketing boards and, supposedly, increase farmer profits by connecting growers directly with buyers.
The result of liberalisation was disastrous for farmers and consumers of chocolate alike, as both grower earnings and the quality of beans dropped dramatically. Filling the void of the state regulatory institutions were new businesses, large and small, who brokered deals, managed the supply chain and arranged the export of the beans. They demanded a quick turnaround, from harvest to export, cutting the time required to properly dry and ferment the beans, crucial steps to
the development of chocolate flavour. The quality premiums, previously paid in countries such as Ghana for high quality beans, disappeared under the pressure to get beans to market as quickly as possible.Additionally, farmers who were once protected from the extreme price fluctuations of the commodities market found themselves completely at their mercy. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) declared that the ideology of liberalisation directly resulted in a free-fall in the price of cocoa, which it describes as one of the most volatile commodities in the world.
Fair Trade emerged in the late 1980s as a response to this crisis. The organisation currently offers cocoa growers a minimum price of USD$2000 per metric tonne13, or the current market prices, whichever is higher. This provides certified farmers with a safety net if the commodities price of cocoa should fall, however there is no guarantee that the Fair Trade premium on beans will make it into the hands of farmers. Fair Trade will only deal with co-operatives, and these organisations need to cover their costs, including the high cost of Fair Trade certification.
Simultaneously, this practice works as a disincentive for quality. A farmer who invests time and money in careful cultivation of their cocoa trees, proper fermentation and clean drying practices, will find their higher-quality cocoa end up in a container along with cocoa from all of the plantations within the co-operative, and will be paid the same price for their beans, regardless of their quality.
next time: THE DRIVE FOR QUALITY: THE PREMIUM CHOCOLATE MOVEMENT
Thanks to a friend Susan Hoban who shared this Final Thesis: Master of Food Culture and Communication
This book explores the knowledge needed for achieving a sustainable cocoa chain and the gatekeepers of thise knowledge. It tells the story mainly from a Dutch perspective, focusing on the knowledge needs of actors involved in cocoa in the Netherlands, and their knowledge partners.
…Fifteen years from now (…) cocoa beans will be transported in the most sustainable way: in mega-bulk ships sailing towards Amsterdam! The port of Amsterdam has introduced a reduced sea harbor tariff for certified beans, to further promote their production and use. Storage and trans-shipment of beans is being done in the most fficient way, as bulk cranes with energy efficient motors and innovative flywheels offload beans. The vermin in the warehouses is eradicated without using environmentally harmful substances. The space in the harbour is also being used as efficiently as possible; as many tonnes as possible have to be used per square meter for trans-shipment and storage. Transport from the warehouses to the processors mainly takes place on barges because of their low CO2 emission and contribution to reducing traffic jams (…)
This story illustrate the vision of James Hallworth, Commercial Manager Bulk Logistics at the Port of Amsterdam, who describing how the cocoa transport storage and trans-shipment in the Netherlands might look fifteen years from now. The Port of Amsterdam is the world’s largest cocoa harbour and the Region of Amsterdam (Zaanstreek) is home to the most complete cocoa network in the world.
This commitment raises a set of questions, regarding the kind of knowledge needed for achieving a sustainable cocoa chain and the gatekeepers of this knowledge. A sustainable cocoa chain involves a process of continuous improvement. How can one ensure that the right knowledge is being developed at the right moment and, in particular, that the available knowledge will be effectively used by the people who need it the most? One must take into consideration the different perspectives on sustainability of the cocoa chain, as well as the different interests covered by the ‘knowledge agenda’, i.e. whose interests are included and whose are left out?
The general aim of this publication on sustainable cocoa in the Netherlands is to examine the question of knowledge and the availability of expertise in the country, and to further compare Dutch cocoa knowledge with the knowledge in the broader international spere. This comparison will serve to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the Dutch cocoa knowledge infrastructure and to provide recommendations for improving its international position.
The publication: This book is part of a wider effort that seeks to achieve sustainable cocoa consuption in the Netherlands within fifteen years (Cocoa that will fall under sustainable cocoa includes for ex. certified organic cocoa, Fair Trade cocoa, Rainforest alliance, and cocoa certified by UTZ CERTIFIED) and to contibute to the global sustainable cocoa economy (people, planet profit). It examens the status of the Dutch knowledge sector and how it can strengthen its knowledge base.The publication aims to present all themes and questions in a way that will do justice to the complexity of the topic, without engaging in in-depth scientific analysis of the subject matter.
Structure of the publication: Chapter 2- Knowledge on sustainable value chains. Chapter 3- The position of the Dutch cocoa sector in the international cocoa chain. Chapter 4- The issues at stake. Chapter 5- Knowledge demand versus supply. Chapter 6- What do the Dutch know? Chapter 7- Recommendations for a sustainable knowledge base.
This is what I learned and wanted to share after seeing the dvd received at the Origin Chocolate Event Amsterdam.
Global standard-setting organisations fro example, organic, Fair-Trade, Utz, 4C, Rainforest Alliance aim to improve the social, envirinmenttal, economic, and health and safety conditions for agricultural productions and processing. These organisations work to continuously improve their standards contributing to sustainable and inclusive value chain development.
The featured film captures key learning and experiences from a workshop on gender equity in global certified coffee, tea and cocoa value chains. It includes interviews with representatives from producer organisations, support services, standard setting organisations and certification bodies as well as the private sector.
Learning session in Kenia on gender & certified value chains.
What are the challenges?
If we look at like certification like organic, the standard that is audited by an organisation like Soil Association, we find that mainly it looks at the good agricultural practices. But when you look further, at the social aspects such as equity and non discrimination plus other social aspects they are not addressed in the standards. And until such aspects have been captured in the standards, thant’s the only written fact that they will be implemented uniformly across of the production sites, wheter in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania or anywhere else in the world.
So in fact that, as of now, various growers may come up with their own initiatives and implement but that may not be replicated in other growing sites across the various countries where certification is implemented.
“Social issues are not addressed adequately in many global standards.”
Local initiatives can be a source of learning for further development of standards.
Thank to Anna Lavan, research en development of the KIT, www.kit.nl sharing me the DVD Gender&Certfied Value Chains.
Also I would like to share the following www.directcacao.org DIRECT CACAO A new voice for fine cacao and chocolate.
Direct is a new organisation seeking to preserve and protect fien cacao through respect, value and mutual benefit for consumers and chocolate producers.
We believe that the only way to guarantee the future of fine cacao, and so the future of great fine chocolate, is by making sure that the farmers are properly rewarded for the cacao they produce. This can only be achieved through close links between the consumer, chocolate company and cacao farmer.
We aim to create a sustainable cycle based on quality and taste through short-chain Directly Traded fiencacao. We believe taht this is essential for preserving the environment, the livelihoods of farmer and for creating great tasting chocolate.
We NOT believe that ethical labeling schermes can achieve this and in fact can actually be detrimental to a fair and equitable trade in cacao.
Direct Cacao brings together chocolate makers and companies, chocolatiers, cacao growers and companies and independents to begin a new relationship based on a true respect for fine cacao.