Protocols for review

The Goal

The International Standards for the Assessment of Cocoa Quality and Flavour are a collection of protocols describing step-by-step how to: (1) sample the cocoa beans to be evaluated, (2) assess its physical quality, (3) process it into coarse powder, liquor and chocolate for (4) sensory evaluation of the flavours expressed into these 3 products.  

The goal of the standards is a clear communication throughout the value chain - from cocoa producers, bean buyers/traders, chocolate makers and consumers - using a common language.

The Objectives

The objectives are to:

  • Identify the intrinsic flavour attributes and characteristics of the beans when converted into a finished product such as chocolate.
  • Unlock the value of the cocoa evaluated and empower producers and buyers to target specific markets.
  • Facilitate targeted marketing flavour customization, to meet consumers’ needs.

The application of the full set of protocols will result in a complete description of the cocoa bean quality and flavour expressed in coarse powder, cocoa liquor and chocolate to be communicated along the cocoa value chain.

These protocols are the result of several consultations and numerous inputs from experts. They are detailed and intended to be used as basis for adapting to different user, from experienced national food quality lab technicians, to national cocoa research institutes for flavour evaluation of breeding materials, to flavour labs technicians in cocoa producers’ cooperatives.

Individual draft protocols available in 3 languages will be re-published. Additional ones are in progress.