As part of its commitment to celebrating African Art and Culture, global law firm, Hogan Lovells recently teamed up with the Academy of Chocolate in London to host an event honoring the cocoa bean and its impact in many West African countries.
The event tagged “From Bean to Bar” held at Hogan Lovells Atlantic house, London, unveiled some of the mysteries behind the chocolate that is known and enjoyed in various forms all across the globe.
A host of clients joined Hogan Lovells in an interactive session to discuss, demonstrate and debate issues regarding sourcing, transparency of cocoa farming and the journey from bean to bar. The session also discussed the future of cocoa production in West African economies, and the benefits available in terms of foreign trade, employment and overall economic growth.
Commenting on the success of the event, Andrew Skipper, Partner and Head of the Africa Practice at Hogan Lovells, said: “Being such an important commodity in many West African countries, the story and journey of the cocoa bean is truly fascinating and one that we felt should be explored. Through a series of talks with respected industry speakers, this event explored both the challenges the industry is facing, being affected by the fall in commodity prices and battling with sustainability issues, but also, and perhaps most importantly, the outlook and future opportunities for this much loved commodity.
“Hogan Lovells is committed to doing business in Africa. We seek to understand the culture and respect those we work with. We work with a number of clients with wide interests in Nigeria and many other African countries. Through our series of events celebrating African art and culture, we hope to demonstrate our deep understanding of some of the key challenges for business, and how we can help clients to overcome them, as well as enjoying some fine African Chocolate”.
The finale of the event was a chocolate making and tasting experience led by one of the UK’s leading artisan chocolatiers who demonstrated his craft at the event.
The cocoa bean is the largest agricultural export of Nigeria. West Africa accounts for 70 per cent of the world’s cocoa production, with Nigeria being the third largest producer.
Alomnado cocoa, one of the highest grades of cocoa available around the world is grown and exported from Nigeria.