Vietnamese chocolate enters the global sweets market

Chocolate manufacturers in Southeast Asia, including Vietnam, are trying to bring this non-traditional sweet dish in the region to domestic and international markets.

At TP. In Ho Chi Minh City, artisans are creating world-class chocolates and adding a hint of sweetness from the spices found in traditional Vietnamese pho, while craftsmen- Chocolate in the Philippines and Indonesia has a little local flavor.

Nearly all the chocolate manufacturers mentioned above follow the bean-to-bar process(first) (from cocoa beans to chocolate bars) or in other words, chocolate making workshops that use only one type of cocoa fruit, without any other mixing.

Vincent Mourou and Samuel Maruta with their chocolate products

Vincent Mourou (2), who has nine years of advertising experience in San Francisco, is currently the largest chocolate maker in Vietnam, saying: “The whole scene of chocolate production- Chocolate in Southeast Asia is very new. Vietnamese don’t make chocolate; We have changed their mindsets. “

It was in this country that he met Samuel Maruta – a banker living in Saigon with his wife and two children – on a camping trip in the woods in 2010, and then they both decided to change the course. my life.

Their Marou Faiseurs de Chocolat is one of the first “bean-to-bar” chocolate manufacturers in Asia and one of the few in the world to produce raw chocolate. quality locally grown cocoa.

The dream seemed to be the only dream of two French boys today is a famous brand specializing in producing pure dark chocolate with raw materials from Vietnam.

In the factory of Marou Faiseurs de Chocolat

The work of pioneers like Mourou and Maruta is challenging and difficult. In tropical climates, on hot and humid days, freshly melted chocolates melt away like hot stones. But the hardest thing for chocolate makers to encounter in Southeast Asia is that their products are not easily attracted to indigenous customers who have never been loyal to this sweet dish.

Asians consume far less chocolate than people living in North America and Europe

Asians consume far less chocolate than people living in North America and Europe that consume more than half of chocolate production worldwide each year: about 5.4 million tons, compared to 867,000 tons consumed in Southeast Asia (Euromonitor International data). However, chocolate made in Southeast Asian countries is gradually gaining local customers when receiving awards from London and Paris as well as gradually gaining the love of this sweetie in global scope.

Chocolate in Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines

Sabrina Mustopo, who founded and runs the Krakakoa Company, said she founded the chocolate company six years ago to help Indonesian farmers find a larger domestic market for their cocoa beans. . The rise of Indonesia’s middle class and growing economy provides a promising market for cocoa beans.

Krakakoa cooperates with small farmers in Lampung province, guides them to grow and harvest cocoa, and then sells products to the company. From cocoa beans, Krakakoa makes chocolate and sells for $ 4 per bar. Krakakoa’s most popular product is sugar-free dark chocolate, made from Sumatra cocoa beans.

“It took me two years to find a way to make chocolate and then another couple of years to find high-quality cocoa beans to make chocolate.”

Ong Ning Geng taught 3D design at Illinois State University before returning to his home country of Malaysia to set up the Chocolate Concierge Company in 2015. He said: “It took me two years to find a way to make chocolate and after it took another couple of years to find high-quality cocoa beans for chocolate. ” Raw materials for Chocolate Concierge to produce chocolate are from indigenous farms, including aboriginal farms in Central Malaysia.

He also grows cacao so that the fermentation of the cocoa beans can be controlled so that chocolate can have different aromas. His company’s cocoa beans are fermented the most days compared to anywhere else in the world: 71 days compared to the standard number of days for making chocolate as six days. Currently, Chocolate Concierge has exported cocoa beans and chocolate bars to Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam at a high price: USD 7 per bar.

Chocolate of Marou Faiseurs de Chocolat is made from many types of cocoa beans (grown in Dong Nai, Lam Dong, Southwestern provinces and a mixture of nuts).

Philo Chua, owner of Theo & Philo Artisan Chocolates, also quit his job in the United States to return to his home country of the Philippines in 2007 at the age of 28 and started making chocolate in the hope that his product would be available. world class. After three years of perfecting the formula and building a chocolate making factory with savings, Theo & Philo Artisan Chocolates’ products began to market in 2010.

The company’s $ 2 milk chocolate bar, flavored with soy sauce, with a little bit of black sesame and roasted nuts, has received awards from these candy research centers in Europe and the United States. , promising to bring in millions of pesos thanks to exports to Japan and the US.

Marou Faiseurs de Chocolat in Vietnam

Cocoa beans that Vincent Mourou’s Marou Faiseurs de Chocolat Company makes to make chocolate come from cocoa plantations in half of the Mekong Delta provinces that have the soils of sedimentary land plus cocoa grown in lands. basalt in Lam Dong province, so chocolate has a very unique flavor of Vietnam, while regular chocolates are blended with ingredients to create different flavors and flavors. . The company purchases cocoa beans from farmers at 4,100 USD / ton, nearly double the market price.

Chloe Stemler, Director of Research and Development of Marou Faiseurs de Chocolat with cocoa fruit grown in the Mekong Delta

Currently, Marou Faiseurs de Chocolat produces 6 tons of products every month, expected to reach 10 tons by 2020 and are exported to about 20 countries, most of Western Europe, North America and North Africa. Each exported Marou chocolate bar has the lowest price of USD 6.5. Marou chocolate was honored globally at Salon du Chocolat in Paris and at the annual Academy of Chocolate Awards in London (organized by the five largest chocolate companies in the UK established in 2005. ).

Each month Marou Faiseurs de Chocolat produces 6 tons of products

Vincent Mourou enjoyed a quote from the English writer: “If you are looking for something, come to Vietnam” and he said: “It is hard to believe that this land has been and is hiding one of The world’s best cocoa source for over a century! “We promise ourselves we will spend the rest of our life honoring that source of cocoa, by making them the most special chocolate possible.”

(1) Hand-made granules from chocolate to hand-crafted and strictly controlled process from seed selection to production of finished chocolate bars. By being made of high quality ingredients, handmade chocolates cost more than industrial chocolates (blended chocolate); Like a filtered or espresso machine, it is more expensive than a cup of instant coffee from a supermarket. One bar of milk chocolate sold at supermarkets contains about 12% cacao, 55% sugar, the remaining 33% are other fillers, while the chocolate from Marou Faiseurs de Chocolat has 70% pure cocoa. The remaining 30% is cane sugar.
(2) A very interesting detail: Vincent Mourou’s father is the famous French scientist Gerard Albert Mourou won the 2018 Nobel Prize in Physics.

Nam Hong
* Source: Businessman +


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