Cocoa farmers Geeta and Leroy Peters from Grand Riviere, Jacqueline and Martin Matthew from Tamana, recently won the International Cocoa Awards (ICA) at the 25th edition of Salon du Chocolat in Paris, France.
According to a statement by the Cocoa Development Company of T&T, the International Cocoa Awards, held every two years, is co-ordinated through the Cocoa of Excellence Programme, spearheaded by Bioversity International. The awards recognise quality, flavour and diversity of cocoa according to their origin.
The T&T farmers placed first out of 223 entries from 55 countries. A third submission by Jacinta and Michael Milne of Bethany Estate, Talparo, was ranked among the world’s top 50.
The Peters won the inaugural National Cocoa Awards, held earlier this year in the Southern Academy of Performing Arts (SAPA).
Following which they were sent to Paris to network with international artisan chocolatiers and cocoa buyers.
The Cocoa Development Company said the Peters received the International Cocoa Awards for the region of Central America and Caribbean.
Their chocolate was described by judges as having “very fruity flavours, like orange and a bit of lemon, also some exotic fruits as mango, that bonds all the qualities of the cocoa along with little acidity”.
Jacqueline and Martin Matthew, of Tamana, also won an International Cocoa Award for their cocoa beans.
The Cocoa of Excellence Programme is the entry point for cocoa-producing countries to participate in the International Cocoa Awards.
T&T’s cocoa producers were chosen out of the National Cocoa Award for Quality programme which concluded in February 2019 with an awards ceremony.
This is the first time the Cocoa Development Company exhibited a national booth at the Salon du Chocolat to showcase T&T’s cocoa beans and locally produced chocolates.
“We are connecting T&T cocoa producers to international artisan chocolatiers, niche chocolate makers and cocoa buyers, thus strengthening our linkages to global markets, and empowering the cocoa farmers of T&T,” the Cocoa Development Company noted.