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Lindt & Sprüngli And Italian Artisans Close To Chocolate Truce

By Branislav Pekic
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Lindt & Sprüngli And Italian Artisans Close To Chocolate Truce

A long-standing dispute between Swiss giant Lindt & Sprüngli and Italian artisan chocolatiers is nearing a resolution.

A potential deal, brokered by Italy’s Piedmont Region, will pave the way for a protected status for the iconic 'Gianduiotto' of Turin, while permitting Lindt & Sprüngli to continue its to sell its version of the popular snack, according to media reports.

Gianduiotto is a small, melt-in-the-mouth confection, comprising a creamy mixture of grilled Piedmont hazelnuts, cocoa and sugar.

'Gianduiotto of Turin'

Lindt & Sprüngli, which has owned Italian producer Caffarel since 1997, has blocked a move by a group of around 40 chocolatiers, as well as companies such as Ferrero, Venchi, and Domori, to seek the creation of a Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) for the confection in the EU.

However, Lindt has now indicated that a deal may soon be reached with the group of chocolatiers that will allow for the creation of a PGI 'Gianduiotto of Turin'.

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The compromise being discussed will permit the creation of the PGI, with Lindt's subsidiary not joining but being allowed to continue to offer its brand (Gianduia 1865. L’autentico Gianduiotto di Torino) and recipe.

Original Recipe

The dispute centred around the recipe, with those seeking the PGI demanding a return to the original recipe of 30% to 45% roasted hazelnuts from Piedmont, at least 25% cocoa, plus sugar, while Lindt's variant adds powdered milk and uses fewer hazelnuts.

The granting of PGI status is expected to raise the profile of the chocolate treat and increase sales, which already totals around €200 million.

Piedmont Governor, Alberto Cirio, emphasised that PGI recognition aims to safeguard confectionery excellence as a shared heritage of Piedmont rather than serving as a commercial brand.

Positive consent from Italy’s Ministry of Agriculture is anticipated within 30 days, with final approval by the European Commission expected by the end of the year.

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