Fermented cocoa beans demand soars after export tax

Senin, 13 Februari 2012 | 08:43

Increased production capacity of processed cocoa following the implementation of export tax on cocoa in April 2010 has boosted local demand for fermented cocoa beans.The mixture of fermented cocoa beans is needed to release the aroma in cocoa powder and butter, said Executive Director of Indonesia’s Cocoa Industries Association (AIKI) Sindra Wijaya.

Fermented cocoa beans account for 10%-20% of total cocoa needed by the processing industries as a mixture in production, he said. Indonesian cocoa industries imported 24,000 tons of fermented cocoa beans from African plantations last year.

Cocoa industries must import at least 40,000 tons of fermented cocoa beans to meet the demands due to a higher production capacity, which is expected to reach 400,000 tons per year, Sindra said.

AIKI and the Industry Ministry have encouraged the implementation of Indonesian national standards (SNI) to improve the quality of cocoa beans from plantations within the country, he said.

However, this plan was hampered by pests and the use of chemical pesticides, which led to a lower quality of cocoa from local plantations.

Additional capacity

Indonesia’s cocoa-processing industries expect to increase their capacity by 60,000 tons in 2012 as two new factories in Surabaya and Makassar start operation.

The factories, owned by JB Cocoa Malaysia and a joint-venture of PT Comextra Majora and Barry Callebaut Swiss, each has a production capacity of 30,000 tons per year and may start production this year, said AIKI Chairman Piter Jasman.

“The factory in Makassar costs about EUR33 million while JB Cocoa invested about the same amount (in its factory in Surabaya). Production of 1 ton of cocoa products may cost US$500,” Piter said.

Piter estimated cocoa beans output to reach 550,000 tons this year, of which about 150,000 tons could be exported.

Industry Ministry’s Director General for Agro Industry Benny Wahyudi said that the government would continue to apply export duties on certain commodities to stimulate the development of downstream industries.

The export duties have proven to increase investment in the downstream industries for Indonesia’s main plantation commodities, he said.

The government has also increased the number of downstream plantation industries’ subsectors that are eligible to get tax allowance under the Government Regulation No.52/2011, he said. (t01/msw)

By Demis Rizky Gosta
Source http://en.bisnis.com