In 2005, “Le Grand Prix International de la Chocolaterie,” organized by Cacao Barry merged with the “International Belgium Chocolate Award” organised by Callebaut to form the World Chocolate Masters.
Young chocolate and pastry chefs use these competitions to build their international careers. It is without a doubt that The World Chocolate Masters provides a great opportunity for young chocolate craftsmen to promote their skills, and it is the gateway to their career as a chocolate master.
Shigeo Hirai from Japan wins the title of "World Chocolate
2nd prize goes to Lionel Clement from USA, and 3rd prize to
Michaela Karg from Germany.
In 2009, the competition’s theme was "Haute Couture". In 2009, the President of the Jury was led by Yves Thuriès, Meilleur Ouvrier de France, and Jacques Bellanger, Meilleur Ouvrier de France, and Jean-Philippe Darcis, leading Belgian chocolatier.
Shigeo Hirai, Sous Chef of the Grand Hyatt Tokyo won the 2009 World Chocolate Masters title. Lionel Clement from United States won second place, followed by Michaela Karg from Germany in third place.
Special awards were given for the best “praline", the best “gastronomic chocolate dessert", the best “chocolate pastry" and the best “ chocolate showpiece". As a highlight to the 2009 theme, an additional award was given for the best "Chocolate decorated hat".