Chocolate lovers may soon get to relish a new flavour — jackfruit. A major farm co-operative is working on a chocolate product based on vacuum-fried jackfruit bits, while a horticulture research institute is focusing on producing chocolate using jackfruit seed powder as an ingredient.

The Central Arecanut and Cocoa Marketing and Processing Cooperative (Campco) Ltd, which produces chocolates at its factory in Puttur of Dakshina Kannada district in Karnataka, is now doing trials on a chocolate product with vacuum-fried jackfruit bits as an ingredient. SR Satishchandra, President of Campco, said the jackfruit-based bar chocolate, which is in the trial stage now, contains around 15 per cent of the tropical fruit.

Suresh Bhandary, Managing Director of Campco, told BusinessLine that the product is based on an in-house formulation. Tests are on to check the shelf-life of this jackfruit-based bar chocolate, he said.

Satishchandra said some people, who tasted the trial product, felt that the percentage of jackfruit content in the chocolate could be increased even further. Campco will do further trials to make it tastier before taking a decision on its commercial production, he said.

MR Dinesh, Director of the Bengaluru-based Indian Institute of Horticultural Research (IIHR), who was in Puttur recently for a jackfruit festival, told BusinessLine that the institute has developed technology to prepare chocolate from jackfruit seed powder. Entrepreneurs can enter into a memorandum of understanding with IIHR for commercial use of the technology.

Stating that there is a need for more processing industries for jackfruit cultivation to become profitable, Dinesh said these processing industries should have their own products. IIHR has come out with such standardised products on jackfruit.

He said IIHR’s incubation centre can support the young entrepreneurs for six months, if they come forward to use its technologies on jackfruit products.