Published grind numbers for Q2 show a marked slowdown in both cocoa bean processing and anticipated chocolate confectionery sales over the past three months.
Malaysian numbers were announced first, down 7.2 percent compared to Q2 2019, followed by European results echoing the contraction, down 8.2 percent YOY.
West European grind is particularly significant as it is the largest consuming region, accounting for approximately a third of all beans processed globally. It was the weakest Q2 in five years and followed a dismal 14 percent decrease in sales announced by one of the largest cocoa processors in a recent fiscal-to-date report.
The market appeared to ignore the demand destruction brought on by COVID-19 and the slowdown in business activity, advancing $26 per MT on Thursday in the wake of the weak European news.
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