Almond chocolates, melting seductively in our mouths, chocolates with praline, or fruits, or raisins, or just plain ole chocolate that guide us to a pleasured smile are some peoples’ guilty pleasures or distant memories.
Did you ever consider, however, that our favorite chocolate could disappear in a few years, or that its price may become high enough for us to be unable to buy it?
The news is bad for chocolate lovers. The two largest chocolate industries in the world, Barry Callebaut Group based in Switzerland, and British Mars, warned that the continuous lack of supply of cocoa in the world market will bring about its absence. Barry Callebaut revealed that only during 2013-2014, his company sold over 1.7 million tons of chocolate, an amount which translates to a rise in demands of over 11.6%.
He reiterated his fears, already expressed by Fiona Dawson, president of Mars company, that the lack of cocoa supply will make chocolate hard to find for consumers, by 2020.
According to Callebaut, the price of cocoa rose by 25% within a year, due to many factors, such as weather conditions, financial speculation and Ebola in West African countries.
Meanwhile, Latin American countries, such as Brazil, which used to produce cocoa, have become its greatest importers, while the increasing cultivation in Ghana and the Ivory Coast is not enough to fill the growing demands of chocolate, especially due to the recent boost in demand by Asia.
John Mason, of the Nature Conservation Research Council, based in Ghana had foreseen in 2010: “Chocolate will become so as rare and expensive as caviar, and an Average Joe won’t be able to buy it”.