Cocoa capers

Published: Tuesday 30 April 1996

A BATTLE royale is threatening to break out between chocolate manufacturers of the European Union (Fu) and cocoa producers in developing countries. At the crux of the issue is what should go into the making of tasty chocolate - cocoa butter or alternates like vegetable fat.

The latter option, already in place in seven EU member states including the UK, Denmark and Ireland, could send cocoa producers reeling in further losses, if it is accepted to be the one and only option. The EU, in a bid to resolve the chocolate row, will shortly be deciding on a new draft directive -for all member states to replace the outdated 1973 chocolate directive this month.

Chocolate manufacturers are currently opting for vegetable fats as this gives them the benefit of developing innovative products like chocolate with bubbles.

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