Technique: Cocoa Growing
THE TECHNIQUE : COCOA GROWING
Most Ghanaian cocoa is grown on small family farms, among the family’s other crops, such as plantains, maize, and spices. After 3-4 years, flowers begin to appear on the cocoa tree, and the cocoa pods can soon be harvested for the beans inside. The main harvest in Ghana is between October and January. Beans must be harvested at the perfect time to produce the high-quality, aromatic cocoa beans that are used in Divine Chocolate.
After the beans are harvested, they wrapped in large plantain leaf “parcels ” and fermented in the sun for 5-8 days. Next, the beans are dried for 8-12 days to remove most of the moisture. Throughout this process, the beans change color and begin to take on the traditional “chocolate” flavor. Each farmer harvests and ferments their own beans, then dries them on the communal village table. A recorder in each village will then collect and weigh the dried beans, and ensure that the quality is high enough to sell. Finally, the recorder sells the beans to the local government, who then sells them to factories where the rich, flavorful beans are turned into Divine Chocolate.
Divine Chocolate's vision is a world where chocolate is cherished by everyone- including the family farmers who grow the cocoa. Divine is co-owned by the 80,000 farmer members of Kuapa Kokoo, the cooperative that supplies the cocoa for each bar of Divine. The farmers of Kuapa Kokoo get paid a fair trade price for their beans and receive a social premium that the cooperative invests in schools, clean drinking water, medical clinics, and women's entrepreneurship projects. Plus, as owners they get a share in the profits, a say in the company, and a voice in the global marketplace. Together with the farmers who own Divine Chocolate, you are ensuring income and opportunities to cocoa farming families and a much sweeter future.