Lecco, Italy-based ICAM Cioccolato SpA has revamped its premium Vanini brand to feature the use of single-origin Amazonia Bagua cocoa as well as tout its “People, Palate and Planet” commitment to sustainable sourcing.

Working with APROCAM, a cooperative association formed in 2003 that works with 460 small cocoa farmers in the Bagua and Condorcanqui provinces of Peru known as the Amazonas, ICAM’s new Vanini line not only provides consumers with an “authentic and uncontaminated” cocoa flavor “perfect for use in recipes requiring a high percentage of cocoa mass,” it also ensures an ethical partnership between the company and the region’s farmers.

 The new 100-gram bar line will feature the following varieties: Milk Chocolate Bagua Cocoa 49%; Milk Chocolate Bagua Cocoa 49% with Sicilian Salt; Milk Chocolate Bagua Cocoa 49% with Orange Peel; Dark Chocolate Bagua Cocoa 62% with Rosemary; Dark Chocolate Bagua Cocoa 74% with Cocoa Nibs; and Dark Chocolate Bagua Cocoa 86%. A 12-piece gift box featuring all six varieties in 15-gram mini bars is also available.

In addition, the Vanini line will also introduce a gianduiotti range that uses Bagua cocoa. The three varieties — Classic, Dark Recipe and Almond Dark Recipe — will come in 120-gram standup pouches as well as a 180-gram assorted gift box containing all three versions.

In conjunction with the launch, ICAM has committed resources to help improve cocoa quality and yields in the area through APROCAM. The first step will involve selecting the best criollo clones, which will be identified and catalogued. Following fermentation and dying, the beans will undergo sensory quality analysis at ICAM’s Orsenigo, Italy facility. Such selection and identification will lead to plantings of only the best criollo cocola clones.

The five-year project aims at increasing the cooperative’s profits by 20 percent through increased productivity and quality, leading to better prices for beans and Fairtrade certification premiums, thereby simultaneously improving farmer incomes.   

According to ICAM, Bagua cocoa is regarded as one of the world’s most ancient cocoas. It was grown as early as 3000 B.C. by the Mayo-Chincipe people who used it to produce drinks long before the Mayans and the Olmecs.

 For more information, visit www.vaninicioccolato.it