Have you ever wondered where your favorite chocolate bar came from? Chocolate actually, as a product, takes a lot of work and production to make. And if you have ever wanted to ask a question that will give you the full answers as to where chocolate came from, then you have come to the right place. You can get all of your answers as to where chocolate came from, in this article. Hopefully, all of the burning questions that you have in regards to the origin of your favorite chocolate bar can be answered right here!
What plant is chocolate made from?
All chocolate is derived from a single tree, the cocoa tree. The seeds of the fruit of the cocoa tree, are what is used to create chocolate. The cocoa tree is actually native to the South American Continent. And Europeans first came across the cocoa tree at the end of the 19th century. To this day, Venezuela, a country in South America produces about half of all of the cocoa in the world. A Portuguese explored, Jose Gomes, actually implanted the first cacao tree in the 1800’s. He implanted the tree on an island found in the Gulf of Guinea.
What are the varieties of cocoa?
Officially, there are actually three different kinds of varieties of cocoa. These three varieties of cocoa are the criollos, forasteros and the grand crus. Each kind of cocoa variety has its own unique flavor and test. And if you want to taste all of the different kinds of chocolate that are available in the world, you also have to familiarize yourself with the different varieties of cocoa as well. For example, the criollos are said to be a fine and warm blend of cocoa. This type of cocoa is most often grown in Venezuela. But they can also be found as far as Central American, such as in Mexico. The next variety of cocoa plant is the forasteros. This kind of cocoa plant is said to produce chocolate that has got a strong and bitter taste. This kind of cocoa plant is most often found in the Southern portion of the Americas. But it is also grown in regions around West Africa as well.
How are cocoa beans harvested?
Cocoa beans are actually harvested twice a year. The fruits of the cocoa tree actually ripen throughout the whole year, but the harvest time for the cocoa fruit only takes place around autumn and spring each year. Harvesting for cocoa fruits is actually really labor intensive. It takes a lot of time, almost a full month, to fully harvest all of the cocoa crops. Farmers can usually tell when it is time to harvest the cocoa because the shell of the fruit will turn orange.
This is most of the general information that you will need to own about the origins of chocolate. All of the chocolate that you are eating is derived from the cocoa tree and the seeds of its fruits. If you are eating anything that is chocolate-flavored then it definitely comes from that single tree!