Chocolate Industry Leaders Sign Agreement, Align on Path Towards Increasing Consumer Availability & Consistency of Beneficial Cocoa Flavanols

By Mars Incorporated, PRNE
Sunday, February 14, 2010

Cooperation expected to yield a standard for active natural cocoa compounds

MCLEAN, Virginia and ZURICH, February 15, 2010 - The unique and good-for-you cocoa flavanols - the natural compounds found
in the cocoa fruit linked to important circulatory and other health benefits
- will soon be easier to identify and obtain when making nutrition choices.
Mars, Incorporated and Barry Callebaut AG recently signed a cross-licensing
and cooperation agreement that is expected to increase the availability and
uniformity of cocoa flavanol-rich chocolate products worldwide. The agreement
between these global chocolate leaders is seen as the beginning of a path
leading to consistent standards for beneficial cocoa flavanol products.

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Decades of research suggest cocoa flavanols can have a positive impact on
circulatory health and related conditions, but manufacturers have struggled
with consistency, reliable measurement methods and communication of the
flavanol benefits and content of foods. Mars, the world's largest retail
chocolate manufacturer, selling seven of the world's 20 best selling
chocolate snacks, with its pioneering scientific know-how in flavanol
analytics, preservation and health benefits, is partnering with Barry
Callebaut AG, the world's leading manufacturer of high-quality cocoa and
chocolate products for the entire food industry, to progress towards creating
a commonly used standard for measuring useful flavanols in foods, broadening
acceptance and availability of flavanol-containing products with guaranteed
flavanol content. Cocoa flavanol containing products can be a part of a
healthy diet. But simply having a higher percent cacao, being a "darker"
chocolate, or claiming antioxidants as the main benefit of cocoa, misses the
point and demonstrates the need for a means to measure and indicate adequate
levels of flavanols consistent with recent scientific studies.

"While flavanols are naturally abundant in cocoa, unless you are
specifically measuring and carefully handling a product throughout the
manufacturing process, there is just no guarantee the product contains
meaningful levels of the flavanols," said Mary Wagner, General Manager at
Mars Botanical, a scientific unit of Mars, Incorporated dedicated to flavanol
research and product development, and which recently launched CirkuHealth(TM)
in the United States, a cocoa extract based dietary supplement. "For nearly
two decades, we've been studying the process of measuring and maximizing the
retention of cocoa flavanols and uncovering their related health benefits,
resulting in over 100 scientific publications and a broad patent portfolio.
Over the last five years we have also sold products like CocoaVia(R), and
continue to sell Dove(R) Rich Dark Chocolate, both high in flavanol content.
This agreement with Barry Callebaut will now guarantee reliable flavanol
levels in more cocoa and chocolate products around the globe."

Beginning February 2010, Barry Callebaut AG began licensing Mars patents
and will display the Mars Cocoapro(R) "bean in hand" logo on its Acticoa(R)
products in the US and other markets with an assured consistently high level
of cocoa flavanol content. "Acticoa(R) chocolate has been on the European
market for nearly five years and this new cooperation will allow us to even
better serve our customers worldwide, in particular also in the US. This
agreement is an important step in making chocolate alternatives with clear
flavanol levels available to a much broader audience, around the world. We're
excited to embark on this journey with Mars, Incorporated," said Hans P.
, Chief Innovation Officer at Barry Callebaut. "Based on years of our
own clinical studies, we know cocoa flavanols offer a potentially substantial
health benefit, and we know consumers are increasingly seeking healthier
products that offer added value. We can all gain through a consistent method
to assure consumers that we're delivering these important compounds in our
products, and through an aligned way in which we communicate these levels."

Both companies have agreed to cooperate in promoting flavanol rich
chocolate products with a guaranteed level of flavanols inside. Over the next
few months, both companies will be updating their science and marketing
communications as well as their websites to reflect the implications of this
new cooperation.


Mars, Incorporated is a private, family-owned company founded in 1911 and
employing over 65,000 associates at more than 230 sites, including 135
factories, in 68 countries worldwide. Headquartered in McLean, Virginia,
U.S.A., Mars, Incorporated is one of the world's largest food companies,
generating global revenues of more than US$28 billion annually and operating
in six business segments: Chocolate, Petcare, Wrigley, Food, Drinks, and
Symbioscience. These segments produce some of the world's leading brands:
SEEDS OF CHANGE(R); Drinks - KLIX(R) and FLAVIA(R); Symbioscience - WISDOM

Barry Callebaut AG (

With annual sales of about CHF 4.9 billion for fiscal year 2008/09,
Zurich-based Barry Callebaut is the world's leading manufacturer of
high-quality cocoa and chocolate - from the cocoa bean to the finished
product on the store shelf. Barry Callebaut is present in 26 countries,
operates about 40 production facilities and employs about 7,500 people. The
company serves the entire food industry, from food manufacturers to
professional users of chocolate (such as chocolatiers, pastry chefs or
bakers), to global retailers. Barry Callebaut is the global leader in cocoa
and chocolate innovations and provides a comprehensive range of services in
the fields of product development, processing, training and marketing. The
company is actively engaged in initiatives and projects that contribute to a
more sustainable cocoa supply chain.

Hugo Perez, VP Corp. Communications of Mars Symbioscience, +1-301-444-7965, or Mobile, +1-301-755-8448, hugo.perez at; or Investors and Financial Analysts, Simone Lalive d'Epinay, Head of Investor Relations, +41-43-204-04-23, simone_lalive at, or Media, Gaby Tschofen, VP Corp. Communications, +41-43-204-04-60, gaby_tschofen at, both of Barry Callebaut

February 15, 2010: 5:45 pm

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