Cargill, one of the leading companies in producing food ingredients such as starch and glucose syrup, vegetable oils and fats for application in processed foods and industrial use has inaugurated a cocoa processing facility with a processing capacity of 70,000 metric tonnes in Gresik, Indonesia’s East Java region, to meet the growing demand in Asia for chocolate and cocoa products. Cargill has It would manufacture Gerkens, a premium cocoa powder brand, in addition to cocoa liquor and butter. The facility, whose outlay is $100 million, is expected to create 300-plus new jobs.
Saleh Husin, Industry minister, Indonesia and President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), David MacLennan, were present at the inauguration of the facility, the company’s maiden cocoa processing plant in Asia. Its blending capacity would leverage the company’s in-depth knowledge of cocoa to enable customers to benefit from solutions that would meet the taste profiles of consumers in the region.
“Our customers expect us to keep innovating and adding value to their products, and this investment focusses on delivering for their success. We have been sourcing cocoa in Indonesia since 1995, and are committed to supporting sustainable agricultural production and a responsible cocoa supply in the country,” said Jos de Loor, President, Cocoa and chocolate business, Cargill.“We work with governments, communities and partners to help build a vibrant Indonesian cocoa industry with a long-term future,” de Loor added.
Cargill plans to train 4,500 cocoa farmers in newly created farmer field schools in the Bone and Soppeng regencies, and aims to enables 2,000 of them to gain independent sustainable certification. It is supporting the Sustainable Cocoa Production Programme (SCPP), a partnership that includes Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH), the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (EKN), Swisscontact and private sector companies to provide training and technical assistance to Indonesia cocoa farmers in South Sulawesi Province, Bone and Soppeng Districts.
The new facility and the expanded sourcing operations in Indonesia would complement Cargill’s existing global network of cocoa-sourcing operations and processing facilities. The investment also strengthens the company’s presence in Indonesia, where it has been operating for over 40 years, and now employs 12,000 plus people in business activities, including animal nutrition, cocoa, grain and oilseeds, palm oil, copra and sugar.