Yet everybody loves sweetness that is the Belgian Chocolate! It is loved as much as the Gueuze (Belgian beer) and the postcards with the Manneken Pis. Where is the problem, especially as its sales of are rising globally? It concerns the counterfeiting and the excessive ownership of the label "made in Belgium".
According to a recent article in the Canadian Business, the result of the high level of demand for this divine chocolate is that a lot of manufacturers based in Hungary, Turkey and China specialize themselves in the production of a "Belgian chocolate". The packaging includes a great picture of Brussels, the red-yellow-black flag and the quote "made in Belgium". Except that this is not the Belgian culinary delight. It may have been made with chocolate that has been produced by one of the three leading industrial manufacturers of chocolate in Belgium but it is still not Belgian chocolate! Some companies believe that if they use certain Belgian products, they are entitled to say that that they produce Belgian chocolate and claim the right to trumpet that their chocolate is "made in Belgium". But this is completely wrong! In order to bear
that name, the composition of the chocolate must include 14 % of pure cocoa, 18 % of cocoa butter and a maximum of 5 % of vegetable fats. And above all, the production must be located in Belgium, from the mixture of chocolate dough to the refining and the manufacture of the bars that will be put on sale. They can say "made with Belgian chocolate" but this is less good for the marketing power than "made in Belgium" or "this is Belgian chocolate, you think we are fraudsters or what?»
This really agitates the Royal Belgian Association of the Biscuit, Chocolate, Pralines and Confectionary, abbreviated Choprabisco. According to Guy Gallet, secretary general of Choprabisco, it is imperative that the Belgian chocolate, the real one, not the vulgar chocolate bar manufactured for the tourists, is protected. Over the past two years, Choprabisco sent several letters to "manufacturers" so that they put an end to their trade of false Belgian chocolate. However, their efforts have melted like a delicious Leonidas chocolate forgotten under the sun … Next step: alert the European Union. A policy issued in Brussels (where the European Parliament has its headquarters, how ironic) already allows Choprabisco to add to the Belgium Chocolate a registered geographical indication. France has applied that this measure for the (made in Champagne) whereas Italy used it to register the Parma ham. Unfortunately, this should not be an obstacle to some unscrupulous manufacturers to squander our sweet tooth with fake Belgian chocolate. Nonetheless, the Choprabisco can count on many beaters that are able to detect a fraudulent product. Then, the Choprabisco contact those manufacturers of "Belgian" chocolate, threats them a little bit and even ask Belgian embassies to interfere.
Belgian chocolate is at war! It must protect its reputation for excellence against all odds.
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