The European Cocoa Association (ECA) elected Steven Retzlaff, president of global cocoa at Barry Callebaut, as chairman during its last General Assembly in Zurich.
Retzlaff will serve a two-year term, alongside vice-chair Wim Groen, ceo of Theobroma, and treasurer Henk-Jan Weekhout, Director at C. Steinweg - Handelsveem BV. Retzlaff, who succeeds Matthias D’hondt, ceo of Molenbergnatie, was also named chairman of the Primary Food Processes Platform.
Retzlaff joined Barry Callebaut in 1996 and was appointed as the president global cocoa and a member of the company’s executive committee in 2008.
“It is a pleasure, an honor, but also a great responsibility to chair the European Cocoa Association for the next two years,” he said. “After 18 years of existence, the key role played by ECA is now well recognized by all the cocoa-chain stakeholders.
“My ambition is to pursue the strategy agreed by the board, which requires us to remain vigilant in our monitoring of regulatory developments on trade, food safety and sustainability which would impact our business operations. At the same time, I will try to continue to strengthen the collaboration on relevant food safety topics both with ECA members as well as with EU/international authorities.”
In addition to the executive committee, the following members will serve six years on the ECA’s Board of Directors: Patrick de Boussac (Touton), Paul Davis (Sucres et Denrées), Matthias D’hondt (Molenbergnatie), Gerard A. Manley (Olam), Harold Poelma (Cargill), Patrick Poirrier (Cemoi), Olaf Reichardt (Fuchs & Hoffmann), Mario Snellenberg (Nederland), Martin Versteeg (CWT).
The ECA works with companies involved in the processing and distribution of cocoa products in Europe. The group monitors developments in the sector at both economic and development levels and is involved in industry avocation throughout several countries.