Ondo chocolates to launch in U.S., European markets
Chocolates produced in Ondo will soon hit European markets from July, beginning with the UK.
The chocolates are produced at the recently-completed Sunshine Chocolate Factory at Alade Idanre.
On Thursday, the firm’s managing director, Robo Adhuze, disclosed that the export of chocolate bars from Nigeria would increase revenue from non-oil exports.
He also stated that adding value to cocoa, a readily-available commodity in Ondo, would boost the state’s economic development, revealing that the chocolate bars would be launched in London by Nigeria’s high commissioner to the UK, Sarafa Isola.
“The Nigerian high commissioner to the UK is eager to launch the product in London. He has even invited us to the UK to exhibit our products, but we are waiting to complete all necessary documentation,” added Mr Adhuze. “We are the ones slowing things down as we want to ensure a hitch-free exercise; otherwise, the launch would have taken place in February or last weekend.”
The launch of the chocolate in London in July would be the precursor to the exportation of the products to the UK, noted the firm’s managing director.
“This year, we would have our first official export as virtually everything is set. Documentation in Nigeria and the UK is the only issue we are tackling for now,’’ the chocolate firm’s boss said.
After launching in Europe, the Ondo chocolates would be exported to Canada and the U.S. before the end of the year.
According to him, the company’s exploratory team to Canada will return soon, and a date will be fixed for the Canada launch, while the U.S. would follow in quick succession.
He explained that the chocolate bars were already on sale in the U.S. and other parts of the world.
“The scheduled official launches would bring in foreign exchange as all documentation must have been completed,” he added.
The Sunshine Chocolate Factory is a public-private partnership between the Ondo government and Schokville Ltd.
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