Estimation of Fat-Free Cocoa Solids in Chocolate and Cocoa Products – Global Survey of Typical Concentrations of Theobromine and Caffeine Determined by HPLC

Alan Richards and Brian Wailes


A method for the measurement of the alkaloids theobromine and caffeine in cocoa and chocolate products is described. The method was subjected to a ring trial test with 5 laboratories from across Europe. The method involved minimal sample preparation and analysis of the alkaloids was by HPLC-DAD. The method was used to determine the dry fat free cocoa solids in 191 cocoa liquor samples from around the world. The mean content of theobromine and caffeine in the dry fat free cocoa liquor samples analysed by this method were 24,572 mg/kg and 3,165 mg/kg respectively. Full details of the project can be obtained from the UK Defra website, project code FA 0202 “Measurement of theobromine content in cocoa for determining cocoa solids content in chocolate and chocolate products”.

Keywords: Theobromine, caffeine, cocoa, chocolate, HPLC.

Full Text of Paper
Link to report of project on Defra website

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