Emily Jones as she decorates chocolate hearts at the Lake Champlain Chocolates factory in Burlington. Cocoa bean and sugar prices are going up, but industry observers say it’s unlikely it will cost more to buy sweets for your sweet this Valentine’s. AP
The world will run out of cocoa - the basic ingredient of chocolate - within the next seven years due to pressures of rising global demand, experts have warned.
Industry experts who met at the British Library in London last week have even predicted the exact date of the impending meltdown - October 2, 2020.
"There will be a chocolate shortage and there isn't a solution to the problem. Seven years is what we think we have left," chocolate taster and expert Angus Kennedy said.
Confectionery giants noted that there are just not enough cocoa plantations across the globe to cater to the soaring chocolate demand, the 'Daily Star' reported.
They warned that world would need the equivalent of another planet Earth to fill the gap needed to keep the chocolate industry going.
"We need another Earth basically if we carry on at this rate. We are destroying the whole thing. The problem we've got is that much of the space that was used for cocoa plantations is no longer there," Kennedy said.
Chocolate prices may increase over the next few years as cocoa becomes harder to get hold of.
With the result, many big chocolate brands will fill small sized bars with more nuts and fruit as they are cheaper to produce.
"If you plant a cocoa plant you get cocoa beans in four years, which means the farmers are waiting four years for a profit so obviously they think 'What is the point?'" said Kennedy.
There is very little growth projected for cocoa consumption in Europe and America but in Asia it is set to go sky high, said Kennedy.
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