Fine and Flavor Cocoa in 2020

Fine and Flavor Cocoa in 2020

Report of the meeting of the ad hoc panel on the review of Annex C of the 2010 International Cocoa Agreement.

From the ICCO website, “The overall objective of the ICCO Ad hoc Panel on Fine or Flavour [sic] cocoa is to provide reference to key players in the cocoa economy of the percentage of Fine or Flavour cocoa exported by cocoa producing countries.”

Fine or Flavor Cocoa - International Cocoa Organization

“The share of fine or flavour cocoa in the production of cocoa beans of individual countries has developed over time. Successive International Cocoa Agreements recognized producing countries exporting either exclusively or partially fine or flavour cocoa. The list of countries and their proportion of production of fine or flavour cocoa under the successive International Cocoa Agreements of 1972, 1975, 1980, 1986, 1993 and 2001 and 2010 are reproduced in Annex C of each Agreement.”

The results of the two most recent deliberations of Panel are displayed below. The date of the most recent recommendation to ICCO was April 2019, and the official report can be found here [link is to an English-language .PDF on the ICCO website].

The percentages shown in the table represent the portion of total exports that is considered to be fine or flavor cocoa varieties. These percentages are self-reported by the countries and presented to the panel with supporting documentation. 27 countries (sorted alphabetically) including Guyana and Malaysia are represented in the table. There are at least 67 countries where cocoa is grown commercially. See the Notes and Comments & Remarks tables for further explanation.


2020 Fine & Flavor Cocoa Roundup

Country May 2016 April 2019
Belize 50% a/
Bolivia 100% a/
Brazil b/ 100%
Colombia 95% 95%
Costa Rica 100% 100%
Dominica 100% 100%
Dominican Republic 40% 40%
Ecuador 75% 75%
Grenada 100% 100%
Guatemala 50% 75%
Haiti b/ 4%
Honduras 50% a/
Indonesia 1% 10%
Jamaica 95% 100%
Madagascar 100% 100%
Mexico 100% a/
Nicaragua 100% 80%
Panama 50% 50%
Papua New Guinea 90% 70%
Peru 75% 75%
Saint Lucia 100% 100%
São Tomé and Príncipe 35% a/
Trinidad and Tobago 100% 100%
Venezuela 95% a/
Vietnam 0% a/
Not Recommended
Guyana Requested 60% c/
Malaysia Not Requested d/
Notes
a/ Fine or Flavour cocoa bean exports are present but the Panel is not able at this time to evaluate and determine a percentage.
b/ This country was not previously considered as a producing country exporting fine or flavour cocoa.
c/ No beans exported in the reporting period 2016/2017 – 2017/2018.
d/ No percentage was requested and insufficient information was presented for the Panel to determine fine or flavour status of cocoa bean exports.
Comments & Remarks
Belize Country did not submit a dossier for consideration by the Panel.
Bolivia Country did not submit a dossier for consideration by the Panel.
Brazil Although cocoa bean exports are small in volume, the Panel acknowledged the presentation of data showing the status of the country as an exclusive exporter of fine or flavour cocoa beans.
Colombia The Panel recommended maintaining the current percentage of fine or flavour cocoa bean exports and acknowledged the efforts undertaken by Colombia to ensure that cocoa bean exports are of fine or flavour quality. Questions remain, however, for some of the exports lacking a clear linkage between flavour and the exported beans in light of market measures. The Panel was of the view this could be readily addressed in subsequent exports and efforts to provide this linkage may result in the country becoming an exclusive exporter of fine or flavour cocoa in the near future.
Costa Rica The Panel recommended maintaining the country as an exclusive exporter of fine or flavour cocoa. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation to arrive at this recommendation.
Dominica The Panel recommended maintaining the country as an exclusive exporter of fine or flavour cocoa. The Panel noted the force majeure effects of hurricane damage to the cocoa sector and cocoa bean exports of the country.
Dominican Republic The Panel recommended maintaining the current percentage of fine or flavour cocoa bean exports. The Panel recognized the substantial portion of custom partially-fermented cocoa bean exports presented but found the dossier and presentation lacked clear evidence that this portion was valued because of its fine or flavour characteristics. The Panel would welcome data directly demonstrating and linking these custom fermentation cocoa bean exports as fine or flavour.
Ecuador The Panel recognized the significant and valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation. The Panel noted that significant work had been carried out in Ecuador since the previous meeting on fermentation and drying procedures which can positively influence the flavour of CCN-51. Despite the tangible efforts, the dossier and presentation did not provide evidence of the valuation of CCN-51 being of fine or flavour standing. The Panel also noted that the new developments in breeding in the country, while not yet a significant part of the cocoa bean exports, should be clearly documented in terms of their fine or flavour status with links to definitive indicators. The efforts in identifying a diversity of flavours within the country are excellent but diversity alone is not sufficient for fine or flavour standing. Each flavour must be linked to a clear demonstration of fine or flavour status in the exported beans. The Panel recommended maintaining the current percentage pending review at the next meeting of the demonstrations of fine or flavour status and linkage of this status to specific export lots.
Grenada The Panel recommended maintaining the country as an exclusive exporter of fine or flavour cocoa. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation to arrive at this recommendation.
Guatemala The Panel recommended increasing the percentage of cocoa bean exports considered as fine or flavour based on the information provided in the dossier and presentation. The Panel noted a lack of linkage in interregional exports/transfers, which did not adequately demonstrate that these were of fine or flavour status. The Panel urged the country to provide the linkage data on these exports/transfers.
Haiti The Panel recognized and encouraged the work within the country to improve fermentation and drying, and ensuring quality cocoa for export. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation to arrive at this recommendation.
Honduras Country did not submit a dossier for consideration by the Panel.
Indonesia The Panel noted an error in the percentage calculation presented in the dossier. The country used the total cocoa bean production base (internal country consumption as well as exports), not the cocoa bean export base as required. The reduced percentage from the correct calculation was based on the Panel’s uncertainty caused by the recognition of smoky beans in the exports. The Panel encouraged the country’s ongoing efforts to eliminate smoke taint from the exports and would welcome future demonstration of its work.
Jamaica The Panel recommended recognizing the country as an exclusive exporter of fine or flavour cocoa. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation to arrive at this recommendation.
Madagascar The Panel recommended maintaining the country as an exclusive exporter of fine or flavour cocoa. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation to arrive at this recommendation, and encouraged the work demonstrating increasing awards linked to exports, exploration of existing flavour diversity, and focus on quality training in coops.
Mexico Country did not submit a dossier for consideration by the Panel.
Nicaragua The Panel reduced the percentage due to the uncertainties introduced by interregional transfers of volumes unspecified and non-segregated by quality type. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation in arriving at this conclusion, but would welcome details on the missing linkages of the specific lots exported in these interregional transfers to fine or flavour status.
Panama The Panel recommended maintaining the current percentage of fine or flavour cocoa bean exports. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation to arrive at this recommendation.
Papua New Guinea The Panel noted with appreciation the valuable information presented in the dossier and the presentation. The Panel noted, however, that the country still had problems with smoky flavours in their exports.
Peru The Panel recommended maintaining the current percentage of fine or flavour cocoa bean exports. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation to arrive at this recommendation. The Panel noted that some prior CCN-51 plantings were being reverted to locally selected fine or flavour planting materials, with CCN-51 plantings continuing. The Panel was unable to determine the balance of this change in the fine or flavour status of the cocoa bean exports.
Saint Lucia The Panel recommended maintaining the country as an exclusive exporter of fine or flavour cocoa. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation to arrive at this recommendation.
São Tomé and Príncipe Country did not submit a dossier for consideration by the Panel.
Trinidad and Tobago The Panel recommended maintaining the country as an exclusive exporter of fine or flavour cocoa. The Panel recognized the valuable information provided in the dossier and in the presentation to arrive at this recommendation.
Venezuela Country did not submit a dossier for consideration by the Panel.
Vietnam Country did not submit a dossier for consideration by the Panel.

Commentary

What is missing in this work from ICCO are actual numbers that would enable readers to calculate what this means in tonnage terms. They may be available elsewhere, but it would be efficient to have them incorporated into these tables.

Knowing what total exports are for all cocoa-producing countries in the reporting period covered would enable much more precise calculations of the segmentation of the cocoa market from bulk/commodity at the low end of the price/quality spectrum to the premium segment at the high end.

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