German chocolate producer Herza Schokolade has introduced micro-size chocolate pieces to its product portfolio.The firm said that, in Germany and across Europe, the per capita consumption of chocolate is 8-9kg a year. The firm is now offering its specialities in micro-sizes, which sales director Carsten Braumann said can help keep costs down, as well as meeting current demand from manufacturers.”Industrial manufacturers are showing tremendous interest in micro-size pieces, because they are always on the look-out for ideas for new products that will entice consumers to buy. A further factor is the cost: chocolate is very expensive at the moment. The micro-size pieces enable manufacturers to offer products containing chocolate without unduly increasing the production costs,” he explained.Herza said that as the tiny pieces are widely dispersed, it gives the end-product a chocolatey appearance although less raw material has been used. The firm has invested in special cutting equipment to produce the little square micro-slivers and micro-drops, which come in white, milk or dark chocolate varieties. There is a coated version, which enables the slivers to be used as taste carriers by adding special flavouring components, such as coffee or fruit, to the coating.The chocolate pieces are bake-stable, abrasion-resistant and capable of deep-freezing.