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23
JUL
2022
23
JUL
2022

Pacific Cacao & Chocolate 2022

A celebration of the Pacific’s cacao and chocolate history in cultivation, value, innovation and its potential in the world’s Artisan food markets. To mark this occasion we have designed six exciting competitions to reward Farmers, Bean-to-Bar Chocolate Makers, Youth Innovators, and Chocolate Lovers. The winner of the Samoan farmer's category will have a rare opportunity to create a "limited edition bar" in a collaboration with craft chocolate maker, Raglan Chocolate.
8:30am
NZDT
Live streaming via:
Mt Smart Stadium, Eastern & Southern Lounges
—  2022

The Event

Pacific Cacao & Chocolate 2022 is the first Pacific event dedicated to the evolution of cacao, from commodity and a family affair, to luxurious branding and world-class flavour profiling. 

Chocolate consumers of today are bombarded with nutritional claims and traceable sourcing. Everyone is looking for the best story to help them decide how they feel about cacao and chocolate. Whichever decision you make as a consumer, this event will help to remind you that behind every food we consume, there are people; farmers, families, villages communities.
With very little technology involved in the cultivation and processing of cacao, selecting the best beans for your chocolate bar is in the loving hands of Pacific farmers.

Craft chocolate is a growing and exciting food industry where Pacific cacao needs recognition, through its stories of origin, tradition, diversity of flavours and terroirs.


Equally important, are the passionate chocolate makers who make up the Pacific’s growing Craft Chocolate industry. Without them we would not have the diverse choices on retail shelves.

This one-day, ticketed event consists of two mini-events: the Chocolate Trade Event (daytime), and the VIP Cacao Awards (evening). To engage to with our international and pacific audiences, we will reach out through two interactive Webinars before and after the event. 

This event is supported by The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade New Zealand (MFAT); and is a collaboration between Grow Asia Pacific Charitable Trust, Ms Sunshine Organic Farms Charitable Trust, Samoa, and SPS Biota NZ.

We look forward to celebrating Pacific Cacao & Chocolate with you on July 23rd.

Goals
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Sponsors/Partners

If you wish to support our event, here's how you can get involved:

Sponsor | Exhibit | Volunteer | Guest speaker | Influencer | Compete | Share

Become a sponsor

Exhibitors

Join the first Cacao & Chocolate Celebration in Aotearoa, hosted by the Pacific People who cultivate it.

Please contact Floris Niu on +64 274 089 061 or email hello@pacificcacao.org.nz for more information.

Register to exhibit with us

Pacific Cacao and Chocolate 2022, is New Zealand’s first authentic celebration of cacao and chocolate, brought to you by the people who cultivate and export it from the Pacific. Exhibiting with us means you are interested and committed to work with Pacific beans, to create new products or to further your connection and weave new stories that will impact your consumers and the world in a positive way.

  • Promote and sell your products to new audiences

  • Enter your Pacific inspired bean-to-bar in the Producer's Bar competition to win some amazing prizes

  • Connect with the Pacific Supply Chain directly

  • Be inspired to try Pacific cacao and tell new cacao stories that are closer to home

  • Join the Pacific Cacao Revolution to foster better trade relations in the region, improve prosperity for farmers, create new products for New Zealand producers

Exhibitor Booth Prices:
  • $500 +gst Standard 3 x 3 Booth (includes VIP Pass for 2 people)
    $200 +gst Country Booth
    $100 +gst Koko Samoa Producer Booth

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Our Exhibitors

The Farmers

Samoan cacao farmers at an Agri-tourism event on Ms Sunshine Organic Farms, Tuana'i Village, Upolu island @mssunshinefarms

For more than 130 years the Pacific farmers have been cultivating and exporting fine-flavour cacao varieties; trinitario, amelonado and criollo among others. Farmers predominantly grow cacao as part of multi-crops in smallholder farms. Families or villages help to process the beans through fermentation, drying and packing for export.

In Samoa, cacao is highly consumed locally because it's simply that good! Now the secret is out, as New Zealand chocolatiers and food producers are discovering the goodness, and convenience of sourcing premium quality beans from the Pacific Islands. Still, many people are not aware of the profound history that pacific islanders have with this ancient Latin American superfood.

Cacao, koko or kokoa as it is commonly known in the islands, has contributed to the Pacific’s economic resilience, while remarkably birthing a unique food and social culture. Today, cacao continues to temper the soul and essence of what Pacific Islanders  create in their kitchens.

Slow roasting cacao beans on the fire.

Getting ready to host an Agri-tour,
and meditating on the beans

Koko Samoa chocolate paste made in a wooden bowl called tanoa ku'i koko (mortar and pestle)

Samoa

Cocoa was introduced into Samoa by the 1890s by Germans. Commercial farming reached its peak in the 1960’s but by the early 2000’s it had dwindled to only a handful of cocoa farmers. Despite the decline in commercial production, Samoans continued to supply its biggest client- themselves. The domestic market saw processing techniques changing and Samoans focused on supplying their own families abroad with the famous block of Koko Samoa chocolate. The 150g block can retail up to NZD$15.
Following a visit to Samoa in 2014, Matt Whittaker together with Savaii Koko, set up the ‘Whittaker’s Cocoa Improvement Programme’, to supply better tools to farmers and provide education on sustainable practices. The programme has been a huge success for the Savaii business and its farmers.

Vanuatu

"Trinitaro type cacao was introduced from Vanuatu into Santa Cruz in 1935.  By that stage cacao production in Vanuatu was around 2,770 tons that came from around 60 plantations.“; Grant Vinning from his book, Cocoa in the Pacific: First 50 years. Vanuatu is one of the highest producers of cacao in the Pacific, next to Solomon Islands and PNG.

Solomon Islands

“The earliest reference to cocoa in the Solomons...is when Charles Morris Woodford, the energetic High Commissioner for the Western Pacific, visited John Stephens at Ugi in the Makira district in 1896. Woodford observed that Stephens had planted cocoa trees around his house. Woodford also observed that the trees were “diseased and neglected” suggesting they were planted in the late 1880s.", Grant Vinning from his book, Cocoa in the Pacific: First 50 years.

Australia

Cacao production in Queensland is in its infancy; producers are located along the wet tropical coast from the Daintree region to south of Tully and focused around the towns of Mossman and Innisfail.
A pioneer of Australian chocolate is Daintree Estates at Mossman, north Queensland. Other producers in the north include the highly awarded Charley's Chocolate Factory at Mission Beach which won an International 2017 Cocoa of Excellence Award in Paris.

Fiji

Cocoa was introduced to Fiji in 1880 by the British with several varieties; Trinitario from Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) and Trinidad . The modern day development of the industry was initiated in 1960's when the government made efforts to establish cacao as a smallholder crop to be interplanted with coconut.

"According to local chocolate maker Tomo Zukoshi, in the 1880’s, The Royal Botanical Garden of England sent cacao to Fiji, which by then had been claimed as a British colony. Due to increased taxes on goods from the Caribbean, seeking non-Caribbean sources for cacao had become a high priority for the Brits. So after almost a year’s journey through South Asia and Oceania, cacao trees finally arrived on the islands of Fiji." blog by Dame Cacao

Papua New Guinea

Papua New Guinea is the birthplace of some of the most flavourful cocoa beans around the world. But the beans’ natural flavour has consistently been influenced by the local traditional method for drying: wood fire. Farmers dried their beans like this because of the very high humidity. The smoke however had a huge impact on the natural flavour, and consequently the taste of the chocolate. In recent years through the influence of companies like Belcolade, PNG has been transitioning to natural sun-drying methods.

Philippines

"The first cacao in Asia was planted in the Philippines in 1670 while commercial farms developed in the 1950s. Production level reached 35,000 MT by 1990. However, production started to decline due to several factors such as weather and climatic condition, pests and diseases infestation, and aging trees. The decline was further aggravated by decreasing world market price and competition with other plantation crops such as banana and palm oil. Since 2014 there has been a joint effort by government and the sector to revive the crop.
In 2018, the Philippines produced 7983.20 metric tons of cacao and exported 2732.6 metric tons of cacao beans. Production is highest in the Davao region, representing 82% of total production."
– The Philippine Cacao Industry

Turning the beans in traditional woven basket. Demonstration at Agritourism event. @mssunshinefarms

The science of making fine chocolate

It’s early morning and Samoan cacao farmer and chocolate creator, Floris Niu, puts on her gumboots, ready for the day’s routine on her farm in Tuanai village, Samoa.

Her first task is part chore and part meditation as she heads to the umukuka or cookhouse shelter in her backyard. She lifts a banana leaf covering a large woven coconut leaf basket, revealing fermenting cacao beans.

As a former cacao bean supplier to boutique chocolate company “She Universe”, New Zealand, Floris knows every bean she has exported or sold domestically.

Continue reading >
Goals
craft chocolate maker

The Raglan Chocolate Story

Mike and Simone believe that,

“good chocolate is an exotic treat, made by craftspeople, not the sugary confection made in a large corporation”

Mike was a chef who then turned food technologist, and while he learned to make chocolate years before Raglan Chocolate, he always believed there was a better way to produce good and honest food. Mike was inspired by the alternative, fairness, and authenticity of the bean-to-bar concept that it became the heart of the couple’s business venture, Raglan Chocolate.

Raglan Chocolate was also born out of the encouragement from their small, beach town community. They are the designated Crafter of Pacific Cacao & Chocolate bean-to-bars for the Pacific Cup's Competition with contenders from: Samoa, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Fiji, Philippines, Bougainville/Papua New Guinea.

Bean-to-bars crafted with Pacific beans by Raglan Chocolate @raglanchocolate

Competitions

We will be hosting two categories of Competitions:
Major - Pre-judged & announced at the VIP Cacao Awards
  • Samoan Farmer’s Award- bean and chocolate blind tasting - Winner will collaborate with Raglan Chocolate on a limited edition bar for 1 year. Sponsored by PC&C 2022

  • Producer's Pacific Bean-to-bar, using beans from any of the following: Samoa, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, PNG/Bougainville, Philippines, Fiji. Sponsored by PC&C 2022 and Taumeasina Island Resort, Samoa

  • Youth Cacao Innovators- bonbon & original dish using the beans or chocolate. Open to youth 17-25 y/o. Combination pre-judged and live judging. Sponsored by Ao Tiakarete, Ms Sunshine Organic Farms, Taumeasina Island Resort, Samoa

  • The Pacific Cup- Best beans from around the Pacific. All bars to be crafted by Raglan Chocolate. Judged on Show-day- by the Public.

Minor - Live and announced at the Trade Event
  • Best Koko Samoa hot chocolate brewed on the day

  • Best hot chocolate made with Pacific beans – brewed on the day

Register to compete
Goals
meet our

Judges

Aotearoa
Eteuati Ete

Eteuati Ete is a Samoan actor, comedian, and broadcaster who’s perhaps best known amongst the Pasifika community as one half of the Laughing Samoans comedy duo. He was born in Samoa and spent his childhood there, where the growing, processing, and drinking of Koko (cacao) Samoa was an integral part of life. Ete is proud and immensely supportive of the efforts by New Zealand and Australian chocolatiers who source their beans from the Pacific and value Pacific cacao as he does.

Australia
Grant Vinning

Grant Vinning is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to cacao, and is a Pacific cocoa specialist, as well as author of the book “Cocoa in the Pacific: First 50 years”, which dives to uncover the true history and beginning of cocoa in the pacific and aims for readers to gain a better appreciation of growers and the industry in the Pacific. Grant also created the Strongim Bisnis Project which worked to improve earnings from cocoa in the Solomon Islands.

Interview with Grant >

Ireland
Oonagh Browne

Oonagh, the founder of The Cacao Ambassador, and a Master Chocolatier for the past 16 years, now focuses on being a voice for the ancient ingredient Cacao, that makes chocolate. Her knowledge of chocolate and cacao is nothing short of wizardry. Oonagh puts her heart and soul into educating globally on the health benefits of cacao and being with Pacific Cacao farming communities to show and inspire them to enjoy their own crop locally.

“Cacao is an extraordinary daily food for a joyful life”
Wellington, Aotearoa
Luke Owen Smith

Luke is New Zealand's leading craft chocolate expert, a regular judge at the NZ Chocolate Awards, and founder of The Chocolate Bar, NZ’s premiere craft chocolate retailer. In 2019, he created the Exclusive Pacific Chocolate Box - a collaboration project that brought together NZ's most talented chocolate makers and the Pacific region's best cacao suppliers. For years, he has been promoting high quality and ethical chocolate, and has writing about it for Cuisine, Dish Magazine and Kia Ora.

Tāmaki makaurau, Aotearoa
Thomas Hilton

Tom Hilton has had many amazing successes and opportunities early in his life that saw his love for chocolate and crafting emerge as well as igniting a passion for the origin and history of cacao and the bean to bar concept. In 2021 Tom created Ao Tiakarete and began forging his path as a “trailblazing Māori chocolatier” as well as striving to unite people across Polynesia and bring forward greater community involvement within the industry.

“My dream now is to become the first world renowned Māori chocolatier”
Carl Frazier, founder

VIP Cacao Awards

6:30pm - 8:30pm

Tickets: $75 p/p (or included in cost of Exhibitors booth)

  • Ca-cava ceremonial drink

  • Keynote Speaker

  • Cacao Awards Presentation by MFAT

  • Canapes, Chocolate, Networking, Cultural Performances

  • Final Words by the Organisers

Register
Goals
save these dates

Event-week programme

Monday 18th July

Pre-event Webinar/ Talanoa: Farmer and Chocolate-maker Stories

Thursday 21st July

Pre-judging of Major Competitions (Judges only)

Saturday 23rd July

Part 1: Trade Event 9am - 3.30pm
Part 2: VIP Cacao Awards 6.30 - 8.30pm (limited tickets)

Friday 29th July

Post-event Webinar/ Talanoa: Reflections with special industry guests

save these dates

Events

8:30am
Registrations Open
Public registrations and entry to the event open
9:00 - 9:40am
Pōwhiri & Ava Ceremony with Minister
Traditional welcome
Outside entry and main foyer
10:00 - 10:30am
The History of Cacao in the Pacific
Grant Vinning- verbal/visual presentation. The Samoan Women Organic Farmers demonstrate the art of making Koko Samoa (from the beans) through story. With the help of the audience & traditional dance
Main Stage.
10:40 - 11:00am
Oonagh Browne-The Cacao Ambassador
The Cacao Ambassador takes us on a Journey from ancient cacao to modern day chocolate in a powerful interactive sensory experience from bean to the bar, nibs, powder, block.
Live streaming
11:20 - 11:50am
Youth Cacao Innovator Competition
Live final, plate presentation hosted by bespoke Maori chocolatier - Tom Hilton of Ao Tiakarete
Live streaming
12:00 - 12:30pm
Workshop with Living Koko "The Koko Sensory Experience"
Taking cacao from her Samoan homeland, Fipe Preuss will take you on a heart-led journey through the Pacific islands- using the breath and mindfulness techniques
South Lounge - booking required. Limited to 30 per session.
12:30 - 1:30pm
Lunch break
A time to peruse the event
1:30 - 2:30pm
Pacific Islands Introduction and cultural performances
As the judges judge the Koko Samoa & Pacific inspired hot chocolates, enjoy performances from: Papua New Guinea/ Bougainville, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu ,Philippines, Fiji
Live streaming
2:40 - 2:50pm
Winners of Hot Chocolate Competitions Announced
Winners of both the Koko Samoa and Pacific inspired hot chocolate competitions announced by Ete Eteuati
Location: Eastern Lounge, Main Stage
3:00 - 3:30pm
Organisers Final Remarks
Final remarks by the organisers and partners of the event
Live streaming
5:00pm
Event Closing
Venue closed for VIP event
6:00pm
South Lounge Opens
Refreshments and garlands at entry. Optional photography
South Lounge
6:30pm
Opening remarks
Opening remarks by Honourable Minister of Pacific Peoples; Associate Minister of Health; Assoc Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade; Aupito Su’a William Sio. MC: Ete Eteuati
6:45pm
Keynote Speaker
Estelle Mueller - Bright Sunday
6:55pm
Special Intermission
Ete to announce a special Toast by Asiata. Refreshments break.
7:10pm
Introductions
Introduce Keith Budd & Floris Niu to begin the Awards ceremony
7:15 - 7:30pm
Award ceremony
Awards presented for: 1. The Samoan Farmer’s Friendship Bar Award, 2. The Producer’s Bean to Bar award, 3. The Youth Cacao Innovator’s award, 4. The Pacific Cup Bean to Bar award
Live Streaming
7:40pm
Acknowledgements
Final remarks by MFAT and Partners/ Sponsors Close formalities
Live Streaming
7:50pm
Refreshments break
Special Performance by Living Koko’s Fipe Preuss
Live Streaming
8:00pm
Connect and Mingle
Photo opportunity
9:00pm
Venue closes
Event is concluded
12pm - 1:30pm
Monday 18th July Live Promotional Webinar/ Talanoa
Facebook live, Youtube: Pre-show interviews with panelists, videos, farmer and chocolate maker stories.
Zoom
Register
3pm - 4:30pm
Friday 29th July Live Reflections Webinar/ Talanoa
Facebook live, Youtube: Post-show Reflections guest speakers.
Zoom
Register
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FAQ

How much does it cost to attend the show as a member of the public?

Adults $15
Students/ Senior Citizens $7
Children 5-12 years $5

How much is an exhibitor's booth?

$500 NZD Standard booth 3 x 3m (includes 2 entries to the VIP Cacao Awards)
$200 NZD Standard booth for country/ farmers (includes 1 entry to the VIP Cacao Awards)
$100 NZD Koko Samoa exhibitor booth