HCP Protocol for the Use of the HCP Mark & Logos

Click here to Download a PDF of this Protocol in English

Long-term and increased commercial success is part of the Heirloom Cacao Preservation Initiative (HCP) mission and paramount to its success (which is why the HCP only designates trees currently producing cacao for sale). Growers are in control of the HCP Mark, not manufacturers or intermediaries, even if those manufacturers/ intermediaries have sponsored a grower and must be approved by the grower,or sponsoring manufacturers or intermediaries of those growers, of the designated beans.

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Use of the HCP Designation Mark (center, above), HCP logo (left), and FCIA logo (right) for promotional and sales purposes requires strict compliance to the following protocol before any mark can be used for the sale of beans and manufacture of chocolate.

The HCP is not a certifying agency per se; the HCP Mark (middle, above) is recognition of valued flavor via a designation of a specific stand/orchard/farm of trees from which the beans were submitted and leaf samples were taken for genetic analysis. Heirloom designation is transferable to trees propagated immediately adjacent to the HCP designated stand in and in rough proportion to the individual genetics of that stand provided it is owned or operated by the grower at the same location (no more than 20-meter separation – more requires prior approval by the HCP. Heirloom designation does not apply to similar trees grown in the vicinity or any region not owned and operated by the grower no matter how close-by they are and no matter how similar their genetics.

Improper use of the HCP Mark may result in suspension of Heirloom designation pending investigation. While the HCP will make every endeavor to monitor Heirloom designations after future harvests, this protocol is designed to prevent improper use of, and false claims about, HCP Heirloom designations.

USE OF PRESS RELEASE & INFO POSTED ON THE HCP/FCIA WEB SITE
The HCP Mark and Logo as well as the FCIA logo are approved for immediate use by growers, as well as sponsoring manufacturers or intermediaries of those growers, in conjunction with the approved press release and links to any information posted on the FCIA/HCP web site, including Tasting Panel notes and USDA genetic profile as they relate to the specific trees named in the designation certificate. A digital version of the certificate may also be placed on the web site of the grower. The HCP allows designees to adapt the release for local/regional/international purposes with written permission from the HCP. All members of the HCP will be available for comment on those adapted releases.

THE FOLLOWING PERMISSIONS MUST BE RENEWED ANNUALLY

GROWER/REP USE OF THE HCP MARK FOR SALES & MARKETING
The HCP requires a signed letter IN ADVANCE OF ANY SALE OR MARKETING from the grower (hard copy by mail or scanned copy via email okay, an email alone is not) requesting the use of the HCP Mark and Logo that states approximately how many kilos of that cacao will be made available for commercial sale that year and that the cacao being sold under that mark and

  • has traceability to and from the EXACT farm orchard/stand designated Heirloom by the HCP; AND
  • has NOT been mixed with any other non-Heirloom designated cacaos.

The HCP will then authorize in writing the use of its marks and logos for this Heirloom designation and kilos stated and provide high-resolution images of each.

If beans are not directly traded, a statement must also be received by the HCP from any intermediaries (brokers, traders, reps, cooperatives) that no mixing was done and that the beans passed directly from the grower to the intermediaries.

MANUFACTURER USE OF THE HCP MARK FOR SALES & MARKETING
The HCP requires a signed letter from the manufacturer IN ADVANCE OF ANY USE (hard copy by mail or scanned copy via okay, an email is not) requesting the use of the HCP Mark and Logo. This letter must state and verify that the cocoa mass of the chocolate or products being sold under that mark is exclusively from Heirloom beans and how many tons of beans are being used in production. (The HCP takes no stand with manufacturers on roasting, sugar or other formulation parameters, inclusions, or percentage.)

The HCP will then authorize in writing the use of its marks and logos for this Heirloom designation and kilos stated and provide high-resolution images of each. (Note: A manufacturer that wants to blend Heirloom beans with non-Heirloom beans must receive clearance from the HCP to do so and percentages must be clearly noted on the packaging.)