Beer yeasts makes chocolate even more delicious
BE Barry Choclate

Can you imagine beer yeast helping chocolate to taste even better?

But one of the world’s leading manufacturer of high-end chocolate, Barry Callebaut has just confirmed that this is possible!

The European chocolate producer, inspired by Belgian brewers, developed a research with special yeasts that unlocks the flavour and aroma from the cocoa beans that enriches the chocolate taste.

According to the group, the taste of the chocolate comes mainly from a fermentation in the cocoa beans during the drying process. And different yeast strains give the unique taste for each chocolate.

Barry Callebaut managed to improve the process of cocoa fermentation, basing the research on Saccharomyces cerevisiae - the main yeast used to brew beer.

“A completely natural process – refined during a hundred years of winemaking and beer brewing – now makes it possible to unlock the flavour and aroma precursors in the cocoa beans. A Belgian artisan product will now contribute to a new national pride. We could not make this story any more Belgian”, said Gino Vrancken, Global R&D Program Manager at the Cocoa Science Team at the Barry Callebaut Group.

For the last 20 years the group has been investing to find ways to optimize the natural fermentation process and to develop insights in creating exciting new flavours. In the last few years, the researchers isolated hundreds of yeasts from cocoa fermentation processes on various sites in Africa and Asia Pacific. These yeasts were then examined in labs to determine which characteristics yielded superior chocolate. Based on the results, the research team developed a new yeast strain combining all the desirable traits.

Today, Barry Callebaut is the first, in collaboration with the Verstrepen Lab (VIB / KU Leuven), to craft yeast starter cultures that enrich the full flavour development of the end product - chocolate with a more intense flavour.


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