Barry Callebaut has introduced a fourth variety of chocolate — ‘Ruby’ chocolate — created from the red Ruby cocoa bean.
The Swiss chocolate and cocoa products manufacturer announced the invention Tuesday at a launch event in Shanghai, China, 80 years after white chocolate was introduced as the third type of chocolate. Barry Callebaut says Ruby chocolate is not “bitter, milky or sweet,” but offers a “tension between berry-fruitiness and luscious smoothness.” No berry flavors or color are added to Ruby chocolate.
Barry Callebaut sources Ruby cocoa beans from Ecuador, Brazil and the Ivory Coast. They have a specific set of attributes, which Barry Callebaut unlocked through a process developed in the company’s R&D centers in France and Belgium and the Jacobs University, the company said in a press release.
“Consumer research in very different markets confirms that Ruby chocolate not only satisfies a new consumer need found among Millennials — hedonistic indulgence — but also high purchase intent at different price points,” says Peter Boone, Barry Callebaut’s chief innovation and quality officer. “We’re looking forward to working with our partners on introducing this innovative breakthrough to the market and making the new Ruby chocolate category available to chocolate manufacturers and consumers around the world as the fourth reference next to dark, milk and white chocolate.”
Ruby chocolate meets a consumer need no chocolate ever has, reveals quantitative research performed by independent international market and consumer agency Haystack. It’s expected that Ruby, like dark, milk and white chocolates, will be introduced in different product categories.
Ruby chocolate has also been tested and validated through extensive consumer research run by Haystack and research agency Ipsos in the United Kingdom, United States, China and Japan. As part of these studies, Ruby’s consumer appeal and purchase intent have been tested, indicating consumers would buy Ruby chocolate at different price points.
A Barry Callebaut spokeswoman said global business-to-consumer brands and artisans are expected to explore Ruby chocolate the coming months, noting it takes 6 to 18 months to introduce these products for mass consumption. Ruby chocolate will be available to customers in the United States, Europe and Asia.