Chocolate supplier expands in China

by Jeff Gelski
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Barry Callebaut AG, Zurich, Switzerland, inaugurated its chocolate factory and eighth Chocolate Academy in the People’s Republic of China. The facility in Suzhou has an annual production capacity of 25,000 tonnes.

The Chocolate Academy employs two pastry chefs promoting brands Callebaut (for Belgian chocolate), Cacao Barry (for French chocolate) and Carma (for Swiss chocolate). The academy will offer training course for chocolate artisans.

Barry Callebaut’s chocolate sales in the Asia-Pacific region rose about 20% in 2006-07. The company aims to grow its sales out of China by six times by 2012.

"Demand for chocolate in China is growing at an incredible speed and will be further spurred by the Olympics in 2008 and the World Expo in Shanghai in 2010," said Maurizio Decio, vice-president in Asia for Barry Callebaut. "With the growth in income, consumption of chocolate will become more accessible to a larger part of the population."

Barry Callebaut also said it closed a transaction with Morinaga, a Japanese food company. Barry Callebaut acquired cocoa and chocolate production equipment at a Morinaga facility in Amagasaki near Osaka, Japan.

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