Barry Callebaut, the business-to-business chocolate maker, has opened its first innovation centre in the US.

The new state-of-the-art centre, chosen for its close proximity to customers on the East Coast, will focus on researching and developing new chocolate products and applications for the specific needs of US customers.

The facility is located at Barry Callebaut's manufacturing plant in Pennsauken, New Jersey.

Earlier this week, the Swiss chocolate maker warned that the weak US dollar and the fall in the value of the pound against the euro were hurting the export of gourmet chocolate to the US, the UK and Asia.

To combat this, the company has decided to launch a locally-produced gourmet line in the US and Asia.