Grenada is blessed with two (2) of the World’s finest tree crops – Nutmeg and Cocoa – sometimes said to be “Grenada’s Black Gold” & “Grenada’s Brown Gold.
In this contribution, I shall discuss Cocoa as Cacao (Theobroma cacao, Linn.) -Grenada’s Brown Gold. Please note, the Grenada fine Flavour Cocoa Beans is Forty (40) times more valuable when converted to Finished Chocolate Products.
Thus if we receive US$2.00 per pound (lb) for the dry cocoa bean in Crocus Bags, we can expect to receive up to US$80 for a total pound of Chocolate Bar, Truffles, Bon Bon and so on.
With the tremendous increase in value, we are wasting precious time NOT selling “Grenada Fine Flavour Chocolates professionally manufactured.
Note well, even when the fine flavour cocoa bean is converted to the semi-processed chocolate such as couverture (or the starting material for chocolate Bar, chocolate Bon Bon ,etc.).
Bulk chocolate mass from Grenada Cocoa can be sold for up to US$15 per pound (up to 7 times the value of the raw cocoa bean..)
It is therefore, no accident that I am bullish on Chocolate Manufacturing and have been promoting establishment of a good chocolate Plant in Grenada..
I have remained silent on this potential to allow these “Conversion Facts” and opportunities to filter through the system over the last ten years. But, I cannot keep silent (no more) any more.
Now, in the Grenada scenario, it is my dream that Grenada Cocoa Farmers should soon receive $5.00 per pound for dry cocoa beans one year after the chocolate plant at Victoria, St. Mark is commissioned.
By this time the Diamond Plant at St. Mark should start producing refined cocoa mass for the 56 or so producers of cocoa sticks and cocoa balls “without Cocoa Grumbs” for making “instant” cocoa tea.
By that time, also the Plant should be producing Refined Cocoa Butter, cocoa powder, Couverture and other conched, refined cocoa products.
So as we move forward, it is my dream that we begin to address Cacao or Cocoa NO LONGER as the “cocoa Industry” but as the “CHOCOLATE INDUSTRY”.
We must begin to think “CHOCOLATE” not Cocoa so not “Cocoa Tea” but “Chocolate Tea”, not “Cocoa Drink” but “Chocolate Drink”, not “Cocoa Powder” but “Chocolate Powder”, Not “Cocoa Fat” but “Chocolate Fat” or even start making “White Chocolate” and Dark (semi-sweet) Chocolate.
We should even have a “Chocolate Break” rather than a “Coffee Break” during official Meetings.
All this is a mental hurdle that we must make and with this all Added Value of more than 5 times at least. It would mean searching for joint venture partners within the Diaspora and others. ARE WE READY? I say Yes!!! and I am willing to help and to work with all Chocolate and Chocolate By-products Producers.
Grenada Fine Flavour Cocoa is too valuable to continue to wallow “under the Cacao Tree”. We must develop in the light as “Grenada Fine Flavour Chocolate”
and we must own our Assets jointly with those who have been exploiting our potential.
I want to see us begin to market ourselves as chocolate makers and price makers not price takers and Chocolateurs as we move forward.
Food Grade Quality and Food Grade Practices must be our watchword and our practice. I am willing to Help.
Dr. E. Reginald Buckmire