Seminar: "Flavors from Latin America: Research on cocoa and food technology"

For whom
Students , Employees , Alumni , Press , Private individuals
06-12-2021 from 15:30 to 19:00
Barbara CLAEYS

The global market for cocoa has been dynamic and growing in recent years.

Nevertheless, many challenges but also opportunities remain. During the seminar different approaches on cocoa cultivation as well as chocolate production will be presented.

A main producer of fine and aromatic cocoa aimed at the markets that are more mature and with a greater capacity to pay is Latin America. The great comparative advantage that is based on a fortunate geographic position, as well as other aspects such as genetic traits and diversity that are typical of Latin American ecosystems, have enabled the region to contain 7 of the 11 genetic clusters of cocoa. This unique feature has enabled the strategic positioning of the region as the main supplier of prime varieties of cocoa, a segment that has the highest level of growth among all the segments of cocoa worldwide.

By itself, however, this does not guarantee the contribution of cocoa to economic inclusion, to boosting the competitiveness of Latin America or a commitment to adapt to climate change. In particular, challenges for latin-american farmers to make the necessary investments in sustainable cocoa-production need to be overcome, and the roles of research as well as government are main keys to identify obstacles and determine evidence-based solutions.

To the extent that the demand for fine and aromatic cocoa continues growing, it appears that this is the right moment to support initiatives that promote research, innovation and diversification of the supply, but also the whole production chain. On the latter, Prof. Koen Dewettinck will illustrate on how his research contributes to excellent Belgian chocolate based on a diversity of great beans from Ecuador.

In this light; the CESAM Platform has organized this seminar on this very interesting topic.

During the seminar different approaches on cocoa cultivation will be presented.


16.00 – 16.10 Welcome by Prof. dr. Peter Goethals, Director CESAM Platform, Ghent University
16.10 – 16.30 Session 1: The origins of Cocoa in Ecuador – Embassy of Ecuador
16.30 – 16.50 Session 2: The impact of Cocoa on Agro-Economic evolutions by dr. Gonzalo Villa Cox - Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, ESPOL
16.50 – 17.20 Session 3: Ecuadorian cocoa and Belgian chocolate: a perfect match? by prof. Koen Dewettinck - Faculty of Bioscience Engineering, UGent
17.20 – 17.30 Questions and Answers

Registration before 5 December 2021

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