Cacao origins

Hello choco lovers!

Since we all love chocolate, let’s learn a little bit about its origin 😊.

First of all, let’s clarify a common question: What is the right name: cacao and/or cocoa? Well, the answer is: both! They are both used to describe  the fermented seed or beans of the cacao tree, called Theobroma cacao. These beans are the basis of our beloved chocolates.

Since the  word  “cocoa” is used as well to describe a hot chocolate beverage many chocolate makers prefer to use the word “cacao”, to differentiate and describe the beans. But both are ok to use.

So, let’s talk about cacao origins!

cacao tree

Cacao tree   

Cacao trees don’t grow everywhere, they grow specifically in countries about 20° to the north and south of the Equator: they need hot, rainy tropical weather.

There are many theories of where cacao originated. Some say Mexico is the native home of the cacao tree, while other studies say it originated from the north Amazonas. What we can say for sure is that originated in the American continent and it has traveled through natural ways and through human intervention to many other countries and regions.

Nowadays, cacao trees can be found in all continents, from West Africa countries like Ghana and Ivory Coast to South American countries like Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru and Brazil, all the way to Asian countries like Indonesia and Philippines.

Cacao production

The major producers of cacao beans are Ivory Coast (almost 40%), Ghana (almost 20%) with more than half of the World’s production. These countries are well known for supporting industrial and mass production of chocolate.

There are many other countries that focus their production on fine flavor cacao, which is used typically for craft chocolate production. Many craft chocolate makers try to get beans from countries like Venezuela, Ecuador, Madagascar, Dominican Republic, among many others, to highlight their deep and complex flavors.

Check our latest blog articles to learn more about Craft Chocolate vs Industrial chocolate .

Craft chocolates focus on sustainability, real taste and quality. The beans used for this type of chocolate have a story to tell and manufacturers pay special attention to the whole process. So please, choose craft chocolate and experience the difference yourself!

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