LONDON – Olam Cocoa on April 27 marked the opening of a cocoa innovation center in Willowbrook, Ill., outside Chicago, and also launched a new cocoa powder brand, Huysman, for the North American and Asia Pacific markets.
The center will assist Olam’s customers in refining and reformulating existing recipes, provide proof of concept opportunities and aid in developing new products in such categories as baked foods, beverages, cereal, chocolate confectionery, dairy, biscuits and ice cream.
|Rinus Heemskerk, global head of product development and innovation for Olam Cocoa|
“The facility will also host regular educational and application-specific seminars as part of a range of services designed to greatly reduce product development cycle timelines and help customers keep pace with changing consumer tastes and market trends,” said Rinus Heemskerk, global head of product development and innovation for London-based Olam Cocoa.
Olam Cocoa operates other innovation centers in Brazil, The Netherlands, Spain, Singapore and the United Kingdom.
Starting in the third quarter of 2017, Olam Cocoa will offer Huysman, a region-specific brand born out of the heritage of its deZaan brand. Olam Cocoa on April 27 also unveiled a new look for its portfolio of cocoa product brands deZaan, Unicao, Macao and Joanes.
|Matthias Richter, vice-president of cocoa for North America for Olam Cocoa|
Matthias Richter, Olam Cocoa’s vice-president of cocoa for North America, cited a Euromonitor International forecast saying the U.S. chocolate market’s retail value will grow by 9.9% from 2016 to 2021.“As experienced by our customers at today’s opening, this cocoa innovation center is a valuable resource that will help them to maximize opportunities related to these demand increases,” he said.