Cocoa grows in tropical areas between 15 and 20 degrees latitude north and south of the equator in Africa, Asia and Latin America. After extraction from the pod, cocoa seeds are fermented and sundried. A cocoa producing tree can deliver on average 0.5 to 2 kg of dried seeds per year.
Harmonised System (HS) codes are used to classify products and to calculate international trade statistics, such as imports and exports
High-grade, fine flavour cocoa beans are generally of higher quality than common-grade cocoa beans, as their distinctive flavour is popular among manufacturers of high-quality chocolate. Fine flavour beans are usually produced from trees genetically linked to Criollo and Trinitario cocoa-tree varieties. Common-grade or bulk cocoa beans for mass production are genetically derived from Forastero trees.
Harvesting and processing techniques are also important in harnessing the qualities of fine flavour cocoa beans. While harvesting, make sure to pick only ripe fruits. During processing, make sure all cocoa beans are fermented and dried homogenously. Cocoa beans should be shipped shortly after harvest because extended storage, longer that six months, may result in losses due to the relatively high humidity in tropical environments.
The grading of cocoa depends on the fermentation process, which is done to moderate the beans’ initially bitter flavour and yield a typical cocoa flavour. Cocoa grading differs across producing and consuming countries. Standard practices have been set by the international cocoa trade associations which classify grades as follows:
The label on cocoa exported is written in English or Other Language . The label included the following :
Cocoa beans are traditionally shipped in jute bags weighing between 60 and 65 kg.
Shipping cocoa beans in bulk has become more popular in the mainstream market in recent years. When shipped bulk, cocoa beans are loaded directly into the ship’s cargo hold or in shipping containers that have a flexi bag . This mega bulk method is often adopted by larger cocoa processors, which handle cocoa beans of standard qualities.
Jute bags are still commonly used in the fine flavour and speciality cocoa segment. Vacuum-sealed