BELGIUM – Swiss-based cocoa processor and chocolate manufacturer Barry Callebaut has successfully closed the acquisition of Europe Chocolate Company (ECC), a Belgian privately-owned B2B manufacturer of chocolate specialties and decorations.
In a statement, Barry said that it will now focus on integrating the business into the company’s global operations.
ECC integration is expected to strengthen Barry Callebaut’s manufacturing capabilities in the growing market of highly customized chocolate specialties and decorations.
“We are pleased to close this acquisition and very happy to welcome the ECC team to the Barry Callebaut family,” Wim Debedts, Vice President Food Manufacturers Western Europe at Barry Callebaut said.
“Their unique know-how and ECC’s highly flexible manufacturing facility will help us to supply a wide variety of customers with highly customized chocolate specialties and decorations.”
Barry extends supply deal with Hershey
Earlier, Barry Callebaut announced that it will continue to supply liquid chocolate and finished products to Hershey in North America under a renewed longterm agreement.
Barry Callebaut supplies products to Hershey across the United States, Canada and Mexico.
According to a statement from Barry, the renewed agreement will enable both companies to continue to drive strategic, long-term growth in North America.
“We are pleased to extend our strategic relationship with Barry Callebaut, who has been a key partner to our business for many years, and we look forward to their support of our continued sustainable growth in high quality chocolate products,” said Tricia Brannigan, VP of Procurement for The Hershey Company.
Boone becomes Barry CEO
The strategic agreement with Hershey comes as Peter Boone officially assumes his position as Barry Callebaut Group CEO.
He succeeds Antoine de Saint-Affrique, who announced he was leaving earlier this year to become CEO of Danone after six years as the head of Barry Callebaut.
Peter Boone joined Barry Callebaut as Chief Innovation Officer in 2012. He assumed additional responsibility for Quality Assurance as of June 2013 and for Sustainability from November 2015.
Barry’s sustainability policies recognized
The Barry Callebaut Group has also for the third-year running been named by sustainability organisation Sustainalytics as among industry leaders in managing environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks with its supply chains.
The Swiss-headquartered chocolate maker is said to have retained its rating within the top three companies for the strength of its policies.
Barry says it has sought to understand key issues of concern that have continued to impact the industry and is targeting to make sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025.
Central to this goal are ending deforestation and child labour with its supply chains, against a backdrop of 1.5 million children remaining in child labour within core markets of Ghana and Ivory Coast.
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