Rebeca Duran

Rebeca Duran

Staff Writer
The Brazil Business


Importation of Chocolate in Brazil

Rebeca Duran

Rebeca Duran

Staff Writer
The Brazil Business


Despite the heat and the melted chocolate, Brazilians really enjoy this product. They are fans of the national product, but they are even more fans of imported chocolates. Find out how to import this product to Brazil.

Brazilian Market is Large

According to the Brazilian Association of the Chocolate Industry, usually known as Abicab, Brazil is the third largest producer of chocolate in the world, with more than 732 tons produced in 2012. In relation to consumption, the country is also ranked in prime position.

With 2.2 kg of chocolate consumed per person per year, Brazil is the fourth in the world that eat the most chocolate. And, the consumption only seems to increase, since the average per person three years ago was equivalent to 1.65 kg, almost 0.5 kg smaller than the data released in 2012.

Gourmet Chocolates in Brazil

Though still small, the market for gourmet chocolates has been gaining space in Brazil, according to Abicab. The association affirm that this sector grows the triple if compared to regular chocolate sector. Looking at the consumers' interest, foreign companies already had eyes on this new Brazilian market trend.

The Swiss Lindt, for example, is currently present in 20% more stores in the country than in 2010. In 2012, the brand's sales were up to 30% in volume. Premium chocolates are characterized by having a higher percentage of cocoa in its composition than the locally produced ones. In Brazil, the National Sanitary Authority (Anvisa) requires 25% of the ingredient in chocolate products, while in countries like Belgium and Switzerland, the minimum content is 40%.

It is no surprise that chocolate importation is higher in the country. In order to create a national production of gourmet chocolates, Brazilian companies are seeking to equate Brazilian chocolates to the ones sold abroad, gradually decreasing the need for imports.

Importation Guidelines

All kinds of products imported to Brazil must be duly registered in the government's electronic system, the Siscomex. The Siscomex is an administrative instrument that helps Brazilian authorities, to monitor and control what is coming in and what is getting out the national territory. That, of course, focused on foreign exchange activities.

The importation of food, in the forms of: raw materials, semi-industrialized products, in-bulk products, or industrialized products, is subject to the Import Licensing registry in Siscomex. And, it is also subject to monitoring by the Sanitary Authority before its customs clearance. The embarking authorization abroad, however, isn’t necessary for these products.

Since chocolate and its derivatives are classified in the categories mentioned above, they must present an Import Licensing and must be monitored and checked upon their arrival in Brazilian lands. This monitoring is the one performed by Anvisa, and must be previously requested by the company in the Sanitary Authority webpage.

No Need of Mandatory Registration

According to the Brazilian Government Resolution RDC nº. 278/05, the products with the code listed below, in which chocolates are included, are free from the mandatory registration of food. That means, when you import chocolate, or any other food product made of cocoa, there’s no need to register the product, despite the Siscomex import declaration.

Code Category
4100115 Sugar and Sweetening Products
4100191 Flavorings and Additional Flavorings
4200039 Essential Nutrient-Added Foods
4200038 Food and Beverages with Complementary Nutritional Labeling
4300167 Candies, Bonbons and Bubble Gum
4100018 Coffee, Barley, Tea, Maté Herb, and Soluble Products
4100166 Chocolate and Cocoa Products
4200071 Packaging
4300194 Enzymes and Enzymatic Preparations
4100042 Spices, Sauces, and Dressings
4200012 Iced eatables
4200123 Ice
4200098 Prepared Mixtures for Food Preparation for Consumption
4100158 Vegetable oils, fats, and cream
4300151 Cereals, Starches, Flours, and Bran Products
4300196 Protein Products of Vegetable Origin
4100077 Vegetable Products (except Palmito), Fruit Products and Eatable Mushrooms

Documents at the Customs Clearance

The documents that must be presented at the customs clearance area are:

  • Petition for Sanitary Inspection and Release.
  • Union Collection Guide, most known as GRU, collected by the National Treasury, in an original form.
  • Access authorization for physical inspection, according to the treasury legislation.
  • Commercial Invoice.
  • Bill of Lading.
  • Declaration regarding lots or batches (attested by an official authority), identified alpha-numerically, when applicable.
  • Certificate of Administración Nacional de Medicamentos, Alimentos y Tecnología for goods originated from Argentina.
  • A Company Declaration authorizing the importation by third parties.
  • Analytic Report on Quality Control, by lot or batch, issued by the manufacturer or producer of industrial goods.
  • Operating License, Alvará or corresponding document for the storage of goods on the national territory, issued by the responsible State, Municipality, or the Federal District Sanitary Authority.
  • Power of Attorney of the company that holds the regularization of the good, provided by Anvisa, in favor of the legal guardian or legal representative.
  • Terms of Guard and Responsibility of the goods in a bonded warehouse, or outside the warehouse, when applicable.