The Process

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This is what 9,000 KGS of wet Cacao received for fermentation looks like. Dried weight will be around 2.8 tons.

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Even though construction of the new¬†facility is still under way the cacao beans won’t wait when it is time to go to the dryer.¬† These are the first couple of ferment boxes to hit the drying racks for 2016.

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Cocoa beans are dried after fermentation in order to reduce the moisture content from about 6.5% to about 7%. Drying must be carried out carefully to ensure that off-flavours are not developed.

Drying should take place slowly. If the beans are dried too quickly some of the chemical reactions started in the fermentation process are not allowed to complete their work and the beans are acidic with a bitter flavour. However, if the drying is too slow, moulds and off-flavours can develop. Various research studies indicate that bean temperatures during drying should not exceed 65oC.

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Here are some of the varieties of Cacao that we are purchasing from local farmers. So far we have about 80% native varieties with the balance being ICS type clones. There is a lot of CCN 51 in our area, but no interest on our part.

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