Chocolate Ingredients / News

Chris Taylor, of Probat Inc., dies at 71

Cocoa expert will be missed by the confectionery industry

A combination of hard work, enthusiasm and insider knowledge of the worldwide cocoa market led Chris Taylor to be considered one of the foremost experts in cocoa and chocolate processing.

Christopher Taylor
Chris Taylor

Formerly the key account manager for cocoa and applications at Probat, Inc., Taylor passed away March 28. He was 71.

“For him, the world was an environment of cocoa and chocolate and nothing less,” says Karl Schmidt, president of Probat Inc. “With him we lost the ambassador, the advocate and the promoter of the cocoa industry.”

Born in England, Taylor’s work with chocolate led him all across the globe. Beginning at Bernard Minifie, he moved to Jamaica to manage Cadbury’s newly acquired cocoa plant in Jamaica.  

His notable career includes positions at Cadbury-Schweppes, Nestle and Nabisco Brands. Taylor was also the director of R&D at Jacobs Suchard in Switzerland before moving to the United States in 1996, where he was the president of Taylor Gentles Group, a company he co-founded with his wife.

Taylor joined Probat, Inc. in 1999 and was considered the “Go-to Person” for cocoa and chocolate applications. He oversaw the construction of a new cocoa processing factory in Ghana as well as many other projects, often running studies for investors active in the cocoa processing business.

Besides his corporate work, Taylor was a published author of many books regarding cocoa and chocolate processing. He also served as correspondent to Cocoa and Chocolate International magazine and was a member of the Candy Industry Kettle Committee, the National Confectioners Association and the Chocolate Manufacturers Association.

After retiring from Probat, Inc. in 2006, Chris continued to run his consulting business from his home in Florida where he enjoyed the warm weather and sun, working in the garden and reading.

He is survived by his wife, Launtia Taylor; sons James and Andrew Taylor; James’s wife, Ranurys Taylor and granddaughters Anabelle and Sophia Taylor.

A private funeral service and visitation will be held on Friday, April 5.  The family would like to thank the caregivers, family and the many friends he made throughout his journey.  Please contact Serenity Meadows Funeral Home for more information.

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