Cacao beans come from the Cacao tree, which is native to Central and South America, but now can be found anywhere close to the equator where it is hot, and more importantly humid.
There are three main types of cacao - Forestero, Criollo and Trinitario. About 90% of the chocolate in the world is made from the hardy, yet bitter tasting forestero bean. Criollo and trinitario cacao bean varieties offer a more complex, subtle and refined flavour and they are what we use to make our chocolate.
Cacao beans begin as brightly coloured pods which hang from the tree. Once harvested, these pods are cut open and the beans (which at this time are covered in a white flesh) are then fermented and raked out to dry in the sun. Once dry we bring the beans to our factory and begin the chocolate making process.
Great chocolate starts at the planation level. All our chocolate bars are single origin and where possible, we source our beans from a single plantation within that origin. Our Madagascar range for example comes to you direct from the Somia Planation. We do this for two reasons. Firstly, cacao beans can differ greatly between planations and regions. By sourcing our beans from a small area we can fully explore the charateristics of the beans in that area and also offer a consistently great product to our customers. Furthermore, we strongly believe in transperency in our cacao supply chains and purchasing from specific planatations or regions allows our customers to know exactely where their chocolate is coming from.