Barry Callebaut inaugurated its new state-of-the-art processing unit at its Zone 4C Société Africaine de Cacao (SACO) plant in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, on March 29, 2019. The new grinding unit, part of a CHF 55 million (FCFA 30 billion) investment, will increase SACO’s cocoa bean processing capacity with over +40.0 percent by 2022. Once the processing unit is fully operational, Barry Callebaut will employ an additional workforce of 45 people and create 120 indirect jobs.
"This significant investment in our cocoa processing capacities in Côte d’Ivoire is one more sign of our long term commitment to the country and to the African continent. Not only as a supplier of high quality cocoa beans but also as an industrial base and as an emerging market for cocoa and chocolate consumption, as is also exemplified by last year’s opening of our first CHOCOLATE ACADEMY Center on the African continent in Johannesburg, South Africa," said Antoine de Saint-Affrique, CEO of the Barry Callebaut Group.
The expansion fits with the Ivorian government’s desire to increase local cocoa processing capacity in its country and is in line with Barry Callebaut’s objective to supply the growing market for cocoa in West Africa with domestic supply.
Barry Callebaut has a long history of investing in cocoa processing in West-Africa, through its subsidiary SACO in Côte d’Ivoire, founded in 1964. Today, the Group’s two most important cocoa grinding factories, which produce cocoa liquor, cocoa butter and powder for global and regional customers, are based in Abidjan and San Pedro. And Barry Callebaut will continue to invest in West Africa to serve its customers even better.