|Puratos Grand-Place Viet Nam, which specialises in bakery, patisserie and chocolate, opened a cocoa collection and fermentation plant in southern Ben Tre Province yesterday. — VNA/VNS Photo The Anh
BEN TRE (VNS)— Puratos Grand-Place Viet Nam, which specialises in bakery, patisserie and chocolate, opened a cocoa collection and fermentation plant – the first of its kind in the country – in southern Ben Tre Province yesterday.
Covering more than three hectares in Giao Long Industrial Park, the factory has an initial capital of over US$1 million out of a total investment of $4 million, said company managing director Gricha Safarian.
He said the facility would process 1,000 tonnes of cocoa beans a year, and the beans would then be transported to its chocolate production plant in southern Binh Duong Province.
The closed production process, from the bean to chocolate, is expected to add more value to Viet Nam's cocoa industry, he added.
Ben Tre People's Committee vice chairman Tran Anh Tuan said the province had 10,000ha of cocoa plantation. The plant would help ensure a stable outlet of the beans as well as increase income for farmers.
The facility also includes a cocoa development centre, where the company would offer farmers technology training to contribute to develop the cocoa industry in a sustainable manner, in collaboration with global confectionery manufacturer Mars Inc.
Viet Nam has about 25,000ha under cocoa cultivation, yielding about 5,000 tonnes of bean a year. — VNS