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Wednesday, 10 April 2013

EU : reinforces control on imported cacao beans

As of the end of March, Europe has a limit for smoke traces present in imported cacao beans. This will lead to tougher controls at the borders, but also as to a significant decrease in imports of beans dried over a wood fire – a practice still in use in certain regions of Cameroon.
The traces of smoke (also named PAHs, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) are suspected to be carcinogenic, when present in large doses.
Another step for the EU in strengthening its control on the quality of cocoa imported will be the setting of maximum allowed levels for cadmium - a heavy metal, which is to be found in volcanic soils, or on plantations treated with phosphate fertilizers. This new measure is expected to come into force in about two years.
As a result, the chocolate industry predicts a decline in the trade of cacao beans from volcanic countries as Venezuela, Equator, or Columbia. This could represent a new opportunity for countries as Ghana or Madagascar, as merchandisers turn to their cacao beans in order to be able to meet their demeans. However, Madagascar, seems, at least for the moment, far from being able to respond to the demand.

Source: RFI France