Sunday, December 14, 2014

Call to Action to Save Heirloom Cacao

November 21, 2014

Fine Chocolate Industry Association Issues a Call to Action to Save Heirloom CacaoIs Frankenstein Chocolate Our Future?
CORRECTION:  Thanks to some of our dedicated and eagle-eyed friends and members for catching our mistake in the media release we sent out earlier today.  We referred to "genetically modified" cacao when we should have said "hybrid" cacao.  We've corrected our release and ask that you give it a second read so the main message of FCIA's Heirloom Cacao Preservation efforts comes through loud and clear.  Please know that we're dedicated to providing accurate information about our fine chocolate industry.

NEW YORK, Nov. 21, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Recently, Bloomberg issued a report sounding the alarm on the dangerous state of chocolate globally. Drought, disease, and deterioration of cacao growth around the world is indeed an issue worth paying attention to especially given the exponential rise of chocolate consumption particularly in emerging markets. The report cited the progress made in hybrid cacao which is one solution many of the larger manufacturers of chocolate are pursuing.  The piece made it seem as though the future of chocolate is one that is scientifically engineered with little to no focus on flavor, a nightmare to any chocolate lover who values the varied and rich flavors that varieties of chocolate from around the world produce. 

Hybrid cacao is not our only option in the fight against global degradation of cacao. Numerous specialty chocolate manufacturers and chocolatiers whose livelihood depends on fine-flavored cocoa have come together to work with local farmers on every continent to preserve heirloom cacao. Known as the Fine Chocolate Industry Association they are spearheading the Heirloom Cacao Preservation (HCP) Initiative which is a joint effort with the USDA/ARS. The HCP begins by identifying and testing the finest flavored cacao which becomes the most flavorful chocolate in the world. Once identified, they are mapped and targeted for natural reproduction. Cocoas designated fine-flavored means more money to the individual farmers to ideally dissuade them from planting hybridcacao trees. By recognizing and rewarding the growers who cultivate this precious dwindling resource we can preserve and propagate heirloom cacao for future generations.  


Fine Chocolate Industry Association go to
Contact: Karen Bryant, FCIA, 206.577.9983 or
SOURCE Fine Chocolate Industry Association


FCIA thanks Guittard for assistance in creating and disseminating this media release.

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