Chocolate Production

Criollo, Forastero and Trinitario

are the three main varieties of

cacao beans used for chocolate in

todays food market. Criollo which

is native to Central America, the

Caribbean islands and the northern

tier of South American is the most

expensive cocoa on the market

because of its rarity.

The genetic purity of the cocoa sold

as Criollo today is under dispute,

mainly because the stands of trees

have been genetically crossed with

other varieties. Of the cacaos

Criollos are the most vulnerable

to a variety of threats; therefore

the yield of each tree is much

lower. Sporting a delicate yet

complex flavor, Criollo is rich in

secondary flavor without having

the strong taste of classic


Forastero is a cacao that is

probably native to the Amazon

basin; it is a large group of

cultivated and wild cacaos. This

is the variety that entirely makes

up the cocoa crop in Africa.

Forastero cacao trees are a much

hardier plant and have a greater

yield than Criollo. Classic

chocolate flavor is the trademark

of Forastero but it has no

noticeable secondary flavors.

"Nacional" and "Arriba" are

superior types of Forastero, with

a very complex flavor.

The third Trinitario is a natural

hybrid that originated in Trinidad

when Forastero was brought into

the local Criollo crop, (this is

what causes the concerns of the

genetic purity of Criollo). The

flavors of this type of cacao have

a wide range, depending on the

specific genetic heritage of each

tree. The majority of the cacao

grown over the last fifty years is

of low-grade Trinitario or

Forastero varieties. A minimal 5%

of the crop each year has been

from the higher quality

Trinitarious and Criollos which

are called the flavor cacaos.

Chocolate has been around since

the time of the Aztecs and Mayans

and was served only to the highest

of nobles and the clergy of the


Thank you,

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About The Author, Carmen Sandago
C. SanDago used to be an office and motel cleaner earning minimum wage on a contract by contract basis, working very hard to make ends meet. Being forced to stay at home after her baby, she says it was like a "visit from an angel"... She had to find a way to earn a living from home... with no pedigree, a high school dropout it was like a live changing event! Today she makes in excess of $80,000 a month and enjoys an extraordinary life! She considers herself extremely fortunate to have found the right business to give her such break in life!