Demand for chocolate is gaining momentum and cocoa grinders are steadily increasing their workloads, according to Bloomberg.
But reduced supplies of cocoa in West Africa might prompt the first shortage of beans in three harvests. Commodities Risk Analysis of Pennsylvania forecast processing to increase 4.9 percent while Euromonitor International of London estimates sales will increase 5.7 percent to amount to $108 billion. Cocoa beans are ground into powder that is an ingredient in cookies, ice cream and butter, among other products.
"Cocoa is a good buy at the moment," president Shawn Hackett with Hackett Financial Advisors in Florida told the news source. "When cocoa powder demand comes back in the first half of next year, the upside rebound in cocoa bean demand will be much greater than it has been in the past."
At 11:32 a.m. on Tuesday, cocoa futures gained 0.51 percent, a $12 rise to $2,387 per metric ton.
Reuters reports cocoa traders said demand is forecast to grow throughout the holiday season and one noted the demand for butter already has demonstrated signs of ramping up.
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