Cacao Powder/Beans

(Peruvian Criolla) Non-Hybrid (RAW) Delicious (Longevity Chocolate)
350 - 400g (Beans / Powder)

Raw cacao benefits every function of the body, a full body nourishing superfood of the Ancients. It's a high source of magnesium and chromium of any food! Magnesium is the most deficient mineral in the average human. All of the compounds found in raw Cacao benefits longevity in humans, this is a clean trusted and super effective source.

£12.99 £12.99
In stock
EU/World Prices

Ancient Purity presents the Superfood of the Gods, nothing added, just real healthy chocolate. The Cacao tree has been cultivated in Mexico, Central and South America for thousands of years, and it has been so highly valued that some Native peoples once used its seed, or bean, as currency. The Aztecs believed Cacao to be of divine origin. Unlike processed dark chocolate, antioxidants are preserved in raw Cacao. Benefits from keeping organic chocolate unheated include; much higher levels of the famous chocolate antioxidants (oligomeric procynanidins, Resveratrol and the Polyphenols: catechin and epicatechin) as well as the preservation of vitamin C, phenethylamine (PEA, the feel good neurotransmitter responsible for the feeling of love!), Omega 6 fatty acids (which when heated become rancid and cause inflammation), tryptophan (a commonly deficient amino acid in those who consume a diet of mostly cooked food) and serotonin. 

The cool facts about Cacao on this page will reveal how this fun and amazing superfood is actually healthy for you. Raw Cacao Powder or Beans are the optimal way to consume this Chocolate Superfruit as the gentle low-temperature production process used in manufacturing raw chocolate helps to preserve the maximum content of flavonols. Ancient Purity has been big into Cacao since their incarnation and still love it as much as ever this far down the road. We love Cacao Ceremonies but sometimes we just want a healthy hot chocolate or a superfood chocolate milkshake. The Ground Powder is perfect for both. Filled with goodness, the crushed Cacao Beans are the perfect main ingredient for a superfood smoothie. It is even tastier and healthier with some Hemp Seeds and Golden Inca Berries in it! Keep one these attractive bags of Ancient goodness in the kitchen for when you want a luscious healthy chocolate drink. Another great thing is that an iced Cacao Bean Powder drink is so cool and refreshing in the summer while a hot cup can be warming on a cold winter night. 

Cacao (Criolla) Powder / Beans

  • Clean, Effective Ancient Superfood.
  • Ethically Sourced from Peru - Highest Quality.
  • Rich in Minerals and Vitamins.
  • Healthy Heart... Longevity Chocolate.
  • Make Health Enhancing Hot Chocolate & Smoothies.
  • Contains Omega 6 Fatty Acids, Saturated Fats, Amino Acids and Enzymes.
  • Supports Emotional Well-Being.
  • Rich in Phytonutrients.
  • Protects the nervous system.
  • Vitamin A, Vitamin B (1, 2, 3, 5 and 6), Vitamin C and Vitamin E.
  • Magnesium, Copper, Calcium, Manganese, Zinc.
  • Iron, Chromium, Phosphorus, Sulphur/Sulfur.
  • Enzymes (Including Catalase, Lipase and Amylase) and other Beneficial Phytonutrients.
ancient purity cacao beans powder

Make Cacao Hot Chocolates

ancient purity cacao powder, cacao fruit beans

Cacao... Real Raw Chocolate is Good for You

It turns out that all the bad things commonly attributed to non-raw chocolate bars, such as cavities, weight gain and high glucose, are actually caused by the dairy, sugar and others fillers added to the dark chocolate. Health benefits of chocolate when it is in the form of raw Cacao beans, butter, nibs and/or the powder include; weight loss (because of its high chromium and coumarin content), prevention of cavities (Theobromine actually kills streptococci mutans one of the strains of bacteria that cause tooth decay) and regulation of blood sugar which is beneficial for people with high blood sugar (Chromium can naturally regulate blood sugar). Also raw Cacao benefits the heart and the cardiovascular system as a whole.

The Ancient Superfood... Real natural healthy chocolate beans in their original state. The Criollo group, which was used by the Maya, is the most rare and expensive of the three. Only ten to 15% of Cacao trees are Criollo, and they are small and difficult to grow. The chocolate made from the Criollo bean has a delicate and complex array of flavours. Often referred to as the “King of Cacao,” Criollo is highly prized. Almost all chocolate nowadays is cooked out to high temperatures and loaded with added white sugar, milk, saturated fat, hydrogenated oils and it goes through nasty chemical processes in manufacturing. The problem is not chocolate but what Industry does to the original food. Chocolate itself actually comes from the beautiful bean of the Theobroma Cacao Tree whose name literally translates into ‘Food of the Gods’. Pure, unadulterated and raw, this bean is loaded with active antioxidants, live enzymes, and a plethora of phyto-nutrients.

Cacao... An Ancient SuperFruit

ancient purity cacao

Cacao is a Superfood

Healthy Weight... In addition to all of these incredible health benefits, Cacao Beans are also gaining a reputation for supporting weight loss. Although scientific evidence to support this claim is lacking at this time, many of the health benefits we do know to be associated with Cacao Bean Powder indicate it could be of benefit to dieters. Studies indicate the polyphenols contained in Cacao Beans may improve insulin sensitivity. Scientists are now exploring the link between overweightness and a condition called Insulin Resistance Syndrome. Improved sensitivity to insulin as a result of consuming cacao beans or dark chocolate may actually support individuals' efforts to lose weight. The feel-good properties associated with Cacao Bean consumption may also make it easier for people to stick with their diets, thus supporting weight loss. Being able to plan to enjoy a treat such as dark chocolate can help dieters overcome cravings that may lead to "cheating" on diets with unhealthy, high-calorie and high-fat forbidden foods. 

Emotional Well-Being... Cacao Bean Powder contains many substances that have earned them the reputation as being Nature's Anti-depressant. To start with, Cacao Bean Powder contains three neurotransmitters that are associated with promoting a healthy mood and positive mental state: serotonin, dopamine and phenylethylamine. The phenylethylamine, or PEA contained in Cacao Beans affects brain chemistry in a very interesting positive way. To say you "love" chocolate may not be too far off, since PEA produces a brain chemistry that's similar to that associated with falling in love! In addition to containing mood enhancing neurotransmitters, Cacao Beans also contain the amino acid tryptophan and monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors. MAO inhibitors allow the neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine to circulate in the bloodstream longer, which may help alleviate low mood and support feelings of well-being. MAO inhibitors have long been featured in antidepressant pharmaceutical medications, as has tryptophan. Tryptophan plays a vital role in the production of serotonin within the body, as well. It also helps turn glucose into energy enabling your brain to work with laser-sharp clarity and focus.

Healthy Heart... The Aztecs gave Cacao the name "yollotl eztli," meaning "heart blood." They may have understood even then the heart-benefiting aspects of eating what is now known to be a boost for the cardiovascular system.

Cognitive Function... Cacao Bean Powder appears to improve cognitive function and therefore can help reducing the symptoms of serious memory loss. A Harvard study by Dr. Gary Small, showed that middle-aged people who drank two cups of a Cacao Bean Powder drink a day had improved memory and increased blood flow to the brain. Cacao's Flavanols seem to increase levels of a complex-sounding substance called ‘brain-derived neurotropic factor5’. This is a protein that stimulates growth of nerves in the brain and the connections between them, and helps to repair nerves after they've been damaged.

Criolla the Ancient "King of Cacao"

ancient purity criolla

We at Ancient Purity love Pure Raw Cacao as it's one of those things having been with us since the early days. We've tried them all, and enjoyed them all but Criolla is Number One and our source is Number One. But rememer it's not CeremonialOur Peruvian Cacao is cultivated by small farmer co-operatives. The Criolla variety is considered to be “the King of Cacao” because it is the most ancient - it is not a hybrid - and produces high quality beans of fine flavours and aromas constituting an important percentage in the production of fine chocolate. (See Related Products).

Minimum possible processing is used with this bean, applying low fermentation and low temperature without roasting, by means of unique methods to maintain its natural purity and quality. At this stage our process of Cacao... Powder or Whole Beans it's more suitable for your shakes, smoothies and hot chocolates, we have the Ceremonial Cacao separately (See Related Products).

Ancient Purity in Action... Cacao

cacao Superfood of the Gods

Nutrients in Raw Cacao

A study published in the Lancet Medical Journal (Antioxidants, Lancet 1996; 348:834) found the Cacao Beans and Raw Cacao Bean Powder to be one of the richest sources of antioxidants, easily digestible for human metabolism. The raw Cacao Beans can contain dozens of natural phytonutrient compounds, including: magnesium, anand-amide, phenylethylamine, arginine, polyphenols & epicatechins, serotonin, iron, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, and the vitamins A, B, C, D, and E. Also it is a source for carbohydrates, Soluble Fibre (the type people need more of). A German study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that women given a portion of Cacao Beans each day reported that their skin that was moister, smoother and creamier. The researchers hypothesised that the flavanoids in the Cacao, which absorb UV light, help protect the skin to glow, improving appearance (Long-term Ingestion of High Flavanol Cacao:J Nutr. 2006 Jun;136(6):1565-9.).

Polyphenols... In addition to promoting healthy emotional and mindful well-being, Ancient Purity’s Pure Cacao Bean Powder has positive effects on the body. The raw cacao powder contains polyphenols - the same beneficial antioxidants contained in red wine. It is entirely possible to enjoy the health benefits of drinking the recommended "daily glass of wine" without consuming alcohol by eating dark chocolate. As indicated by research, Cacao Beans can help reduce or control the levels of "bad" cholesterol in our bloodstream while raising the "good" cholesterol (HDL) levels. Studies have also indicated the polyphenols in Cacao Beans may reduce blood pressure.

Antioxidants... If you have heard about the health benefits associated with consuming antioxidants, you will be impressed with the level of antioxidant flavonols contained in Cacao Beans. Research indicates that Cacao Beans are one of the richest natural food sources of antioxidant flavonols available. They may contain as much as a 10% antioxidant concentration level. Studies at Cornell University found that Cacao Powder contained up to three times the level of antioxidants in green tea, and twice the level found in red wine.

Beneficial Calcium... Raw Organic Cacao Powder has more calcium in it than cow's milk would you believe, at 160mg per 100g vs only 125mg per 100ml of milk.  Don’t you think it is time to switch out the trim latte for a couple of squares of dairy-free Raw Chocolate?

Magnesium Rich... Cacao is the highest whole food source of magnesium, which also happens to be the most deficient mineral in the diet of modern cultures. Magnesium relaxes muscles, improves peristalsis in the bowels and relaxes the heart and cardiovascular system. The dark chocolate antioxidants have been clinically proven to literally dissolve plaque built up in the arteries which helps in reversing heart issues and causes naturally lower blood pressure. Also, various other vitamins and minerals in Raw Cacao benefit the cardiovascular system.

Cacao in History

ancient purity cacao

The Cacao tree has been cultivated in the Americas for thousands of years. It has been so highly valued that some Native peoples once used its seed, or bean, as currency. The Aztecs believed Cacao to be of divine origin, and both they and the Mayans used the roasted bean in their famous national beverage, together with vanilla and other flavourings. 

Columbus brought sacks of Cacao back to Europe, but he did not realise its economic value. Then, in 1519, Cortez brought Cacao back to Spain, and it was soon made into a luxury drink for the upper classes. By the early 18th century, chocolate was considered a cure for many health problems, as well as a catalyst for provoking passion, although it was still too expensive for the general populace.

Today Cacao is planted on over 43,000 square miles worldwide. Cacao Beans are harvested today in much the same way as they were by the Aztecs. After the pods ripen, which takes five-six months, they are removed from the tree and carefully cut open and the beans are extracted. After harvesting, the beans are placed on banana leaves in large wooden boxes and left to ferment for several days. During fermentation, complex chemical changes take place. The bitterness of the bean is reduced and the rich chocolate flavour begins to develop. The beans are dried after fermentation, and during this drying process, the brown colour develops and further flavour development occurs. Did you know that the Cacao Tree can live longer than 2 centuries and that it originated in Mesoamerica in the Aztec, Mayan and Olmec territories? The Aztecs and Mayans were the first cultures to plant Cacao and therefore have proper claims to being the first Cocao farmers.  

Feed your Skin from the Inside Out with Cacao

Cacao Powder/Beans Raw cacao benefits every function of the body, a full body nourishing superfood of the Ancients.

Cacao... Skin & Beauty

Cacao promotes shiny hair, strong nails, and supports your liver and pancreas. It also is a great source of sulphur. Sulphur has a significant impact on our complexion, hair and how our skin glows. It has the ability to continuously build and rebuild collagen and keratin which is important for hair, skin and nails to get their shine whilst also playing an important role in driving nutrients into and out of cells, promoting tissue repair. Polyphenol antioxidants found in cacao belong to the same group of antioxidants as green tea and red wine. These anthocyanins (found in dark coloured fruits, why not try Ancient Purity's Bilberry Powder) and catechins (found in green tea) protect our cells from premature oxidation or destruction and can keep us looking and feeling younger longer.

Cacao can protect your skin... A recent study by London scientists found participants who ate 20 grams of Cacao for 12 weeks were able to stay in the sun for twice as long as those who didn’t, without getting sunburned. German scientists found that cacao may protect against harmful UV rays that cause serious skin issues. Dietary flavanols from this Amazonian Super Food contributes to sunlight protection, improves dermal blood circulation, and improve your skin's surface and hydration. In 2006 the Journal of Nutrition found that women who drank cacao with at least 326 mg of flavonols a day had better skin texture, improved microcirculation, increased oxygen saturation, and improved skin hydration than those didn’t. Stir some Cacao Powder in your cup of coffee or add to a smoothie.

Chocolate can be Healthy... Cacao is Real Chocolate

criolla organic for smoothies

Cacao and Cocoa are not the same

There’s a big difference between the cocoa in a typical chocolate bar and real Cacao. Cocoa is processed Cacao that’s been roasted at high temperatures, while Cacao is made by cold-pressing un-roasted Cacao Beans. The process of making Cacao preserves all of the antioxidants in the chocolate. Roasting the Cacao to make cocoa actually destroys the antioxidants in the chocolate.

Most chocolate bars aren’t really chocolate. During the manufacturing process, cocoa butter is mixed with vegetable oils. This is a cheaper way to make the chocolate, but the final product often ends up containing sugar, high fructose corn syrup, or soy lecithin, which can be dangerous to your health. After harvest, cacao beans are processed to develop flavour and texture. The percentage of cacao and cocoa listed on a bar generally tells you the total amount of cocoa powder plus cocoa butter.

best cacao ever Ancient Purity

Cacao... A Superfruit that Gives us Real Chocolate

cacao fruit UK

Cacao Powder/Cacao Beans… Closing Thoughts

Cacao Beans have been cultivated and used by ancient cultures like Mayans for centuries. It is known to help boosting energy and increase mental clarity. Cacao is the purest and rawest form of chocolate you can find. It is raw and much less processed than cocoa powder or chocolate bars. Raw Cacao is a wonderful source of antioxidants, protein and mineral complexes: calcium, chromium, potassium and also the stress relieving magnesium. Originally domesticated in South America over 5,000 years ago, Cacao trees can now be found in equatorial areas around the globe. The beans from these trees are harvested to make both cocoa powder and its lesser-known counterpart, Cacao Powder. Cacao Powder is packed with flavonoids. These nutrients that have been shown to help lower blood pressure, improve blood flow to the brain and heart, and aid in preventing blood clots.

The flavonoids in this Amazonian Super Food may help increase insulin sensitivity, reducing your risk of high glucose levels. Cacao powder adds rich chocolate flavour to your favourite recipes and is packed with powerful nutrients, including antioxidants, fibre, magnesium, and iron. The nutritious powder has been used medicinally for centuries and is popular today as a flavour booster in baking and smoothies. Ancient Purity’s delicious Cacao Powder has many evidence-backed health benefits. Research suggests that cacao powder may boost heart health, protect the nervous system, and lower insulin resistance. When looking for a great Cacao Powder, you came to the right place! We selected a powder that has only one ingredient: Cacao Powder. It's best to avoid any products that have added sugar or stabilisers.

Experience the Incredible Criolla Raw Cacao - Order Today

Cacao Peruvian Criolla) Non-Hybrid (RAW) Delicious (Longevity Chocolate)
  • Peruvian Criolla Cacao - 100% Natural
  • Produced to ecological standards, free from agro-chemicals, non-irradiated and GMO-free. 

Our Peruvian cacao is cultivated by small farmer co-operatives. The Criolla variety is considered to be “the king of cacao” because it is the most ancient - it is not a hybrid - and produces high quality beans of fine flavours and aromas constituting an important percentage in the production of fine chocolate. Minimum possible processing is used with this bean, applying low fermentation and low temperature without roasting, by means of unique methods to maintain its natural purity and quality. The beans are simply ground into the powder.

  • Cacao can be consumed liberally, thrown into a smoothie or even in porridge. With Cacao the bigger the persons body the more they can consume, so if a child less, for a body builder more.
  • The best way to enjoy Cacao is to use it to make you own healthy chocolate brownies or chocolae smoothies we will soon have a recipe section otherwise, you can find many great combinations and techniques in superfood books and good websites.

Warning: Real chocolate and our Cacao can be fatal to dogs (and possibly horses and parrots) so be sure to keep it away from pets.

  • Brand: Ancient Purity.
  • Size: 400g.
  • Origin: Peru.
  • Container: Kraft Paper Pouch.
  • Estimated shelf life from purchase: 10 months - 2 years.
  • Storage: Keep in a cool dry place, keep out of reach of children.

Q - What is Cacao?
A - Cacao is what chocolate is made from. It is the seed of a tropical fruit known as Theobroma Cacao. Chocolate is made by combining certain portions of coco (the de-fatted cacao) and cacao butter (the oil from the bean) along with other ingredients to get the consistency and taste we know as chocolate.

Q - How can chocolate be good for me?
A - Chocolate is perceived to be bad for health is because of all the refined sugar, hydrogenated vegetable fats and additives that are used to make milk chocolate. These manmade ingredients are the key causes of obesity and heart disease. Our recipe is free from refined sugar, dairy, hydrogenated fats and additives, because we respect your health.

Q - How is your Cacao prepared?
A - Our Cacao is traditionally prepared the way it has been for thousands of years. The fruit, which looks like a nerf football, is harvested from the under-story of the rainforest. It is then placed in the ground, lined with banana leaves, where it is left to ferment for 3-5 days. This essential step in the process is what alkalises the beans and activates the beneficial compounds within. This enzymatic transformation continues as the beans are sun-dried. From there, they are lightly roasted over an open fire which finishes the flavour, kills the bacteria that accumulate during fermentation and allows the husk to be peeled away. Once the husk is removed, we have the whole, pure Cacao Beans we sell.

Q - What’s the difference between your Cacao and other good Cacao or chocolate?
A - There is a significant difference between commercially available Cacao (and the chocolate made from it) and what we sell and use at Ancient Purity. This has to do with the differences in variety, selection and processing which affect the amount of beneficial compounds in Cacao. We offer the Puruvian Criollo variety, a wild/native strain of Cacao that is ceremonially-selected. The Criollo variety contains significantly more of the compounds that are necessary to get the health benefits and consciousness altering effects. Most of the studies about the health benefits of Cacao use the Criollo variety. Most companies that sell Cacao or chocolate are using the larger seeded, more easily processed, hybridised varieties. So while the buzz about chocolate being good for your health is right on, many companies aren’t using the varieties and processing methods that ensure the high amount of beneficial compounds chocolate is known for. Just because it says organic, fair-trade or ‘85% Cacao’ has nothing to do with how much and what proportion of beneficial compounds are present. Not all chocolates are made equal!

Q - Are there any contra-indications?
A - We think of our Cacao as a plant medicine. Like any potent medicine, it is important to be mindful in its use. In most cases, there are no concerns to be aware of. Cacao is a strong bitter and power detoxifier as it helps cleanse the liver. Because of this, in higher doses people might experience detox symptoms such as headache or nausea. In this case, take it as a blessing and drink plenty of water as your body lets go of whatever it didn’t like. This will likely be accentuated for people on a raw diet or who are fasting. Go with lower doses in this case.

Many anti-depressants are contra-indicated with the tryptophan and MAO inhibitors in this Cacao, so we recommend checking your meds first. Again, this is because our Cacao is more potent to begin with and often taken in higher doses. Chocolate doesn’t have enough strength to cause these effects. Worst case scenario could be a headache and nausea. You can avoid the hassle and do some research first.

The theobromine in Cacao increases heart rate significantly and is a vasodilator, lowering blood pressure. If you have such a condition, go lighter on amounts. Like coffee or tea, it is important to reduce intake of stimulating foods. The theobromine in Cacao, which is very similar to caffeine, has a stimulating effect.

Warning:  Real chocolate and our Cacao can be fatal to dogs (and possibly horses and parrots) so be sure to keep it away from pets.

If any symptoms do present, drink lots of water, get some rest and it will pass.

Q - Is it organic or fair trade?
A - Ancient Purity is not a big company and we have so many projects we want to do, so we choose not to have outside agencies come in to provide certifications. The people who work doing the peeling & roasting, mostly women are paid for the weight of good beans they collect so they have no incentive to include moldy or inferior quality beans. There are no chemicals or fertilisers used in the growing or preparing of the Cacao as it grows on its own.

Q - How should I store the Cacao?
A - Cacao has a long-shelf life so doesn’t need special consideration. However, keeping it sealed (like in a glass jar or plastic bag) or in the refrigerator are ways to ensure that nothing gets into it and that it stays that much fresher.

Q - How much should I eat a day?
A - The best reference point we have for this at the moment is from studies of the Kuna people, indigenous to Panama. The Kuna consume, on average, 1 ounce per day of Cacao. They do this in liquid form, drinking 5-6 glasses of watery Cacao drink per day. The Kuna are almost completely lacking modern health complications such as heart issues (very low incidence of heart-related ailments), bad cholesterol and high blood pressure. The studies linked this to their consumption of Cacao. That said, daily consumption will vary person to person and depending on personal preference. Try it out and see what feels good in your body

Q - Is Cacao farming profitable? Can Cacao farmers earn a decent living?
A - Cacao is a “cash crop,” and has played an important, vibrant role in rural economies worldwide. It continues to do so today, providing families with income and raising the standard of living in thousands of communities where it is grown and harvested. It is a crop that enjoys a consistent, global demand. In some regions, particularly in parts of West Africa, farmer incomes are low – in part due to low farm productivity – and as a result these farmers struggle. Industry-supported programs help farmers with issues such as crop loss due to disease, out-dated farming techniques and other income-related issues. These programs demonstrate that farmer incomes can be significantly increased in a sustainable manner, by addressing the root causes.

Q - Do chocolate companies own Cacao farms?
A - No. The vast majority of Cacao farms are owned and operated by individual farmers and farming families.

Q - Do chocolate companies purchase their beans directly from farmers?
A - Only in extremely rare cases do companies purchase Cacao from farms. The Cacao supply chain can involve up to 12 different steps as Cacao is moved from the farming village to the port and then to the chocolate manufacturing facility, through a series of intermediaries.

Q - Can chocolate companies pay more for their Cacao? Won’t that help farmers?
A - An effective way to help Cacao farmers earn more and become self-sufficient is to support them at the farm level – through different programs – rather than trying to set price controls that often fail.

Q - Do children work on Cacao farms? Are there child labour issues on farms?
A - On hundreds of thousands of Cacao farms, children help out with farming tasks as members of the family, much as they do around the world, for many other crops. Helping out on the family farm is part of their daily chores, and for many farmers, an important step in eventually handing over the farm to their heirs. At the same time, there are issues. Surveys in Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana found that too many children are performing unsafe farming tasks, and being injured in the process. There are also instances where children may be working instead of attending school, and even moved (or “trafficked”) to a farm away from their village, to work full-time.

Q - What is being done to address labour issues on Cacao farms?
A - The worldwide chocolate and Cacao industry believes that no child should in any way be harmed in cocoa farming and that Cacao farming can – and must – play a positive role in the farming community. The industry supports a number of programs to help Cacao farmers, their families and farming communities. These programs are improving education: reducing the number of children exposed to unsafe farming tasks and helping exploited and/or “at-risk” children.

Q - Why can’t industry simply label or “certify” its products?
A - In West Africa Cacao is grown on as many as two million small farms spread across rural, often remote areas of the region. From the farm, a complex process takes the Cacao Beans to port. Beans from multiple farms are mixed together, early in the process. To be credible, a label that certifies chocolate products as free of any labour abuses would require monitoring labour practices on every individual Cacao farm on a frequent basis. To do so on a massive scale, covering millions of tons of Cacao, would be impossible.

Q - Can industry guarantee that chocolate is made without the worst forms of child labour?
A - While all private / product certification efforts address labour sensitisation and training, they acknowledge that they do not provide day-to-day monitoring of labour practices. Given the absence of farm level monitoring, none of the “product certifiers” have claimed to offer a guarantee with respect to labour practices.

Public and private Certification efforts face the same daunting facts: millions of farmers and their families are on remote, smallholder farms. There are no walls, auditors, guards or monitors that can track the social conditions on each and every farm. With respect to traceability, while there can be a level of traceability in the beans produced by niche private certification schemes, it is not full traceability, bean to bar, but traceability from the co-op (or similar organisation) one level up.

Q - Why can’t industry trace each Cacao Bean – to a farm that grows Cacao responsibly?
A - The length and complexity of the Cacao supply chain, including the number of intermediaries involved in moving several million metric tons of cocoa from individual farms to port, makes credible traceability of each and every pound/kilogram of Cacao a physical impossibility. Further complicating such an approach is the practice of combining beans from different farms – and entire villages – in the early stages of the supply chain.

Q - What is the environmental impact of Cacao farming?
A - Actually, Cacao farming is most effective when undertaken in harmony with the surrounding environment, which is often the tropical rainforest. Cacao trees grow best when under the shade canopy of tropical forest trees, and when environmentally responsible techniques are used to control pests and disease.

Scientific Articles

Healthy but Smart - Does Eating Cacao Have Health Benefits? 21 Research Papers Examined

MedicalNewsToday - What are the health benefits of dark chocolate?

Scientific American - Where Chocolate Comes from

Supporting Scientific Research

  1. Martin F.P., Antille N., Rezzi S., Kochhar S. Everyday eating experiences of chocolate and non-chocolate snacks impact postprandial anxiety, energy and emotional states. Nutrients. 2012;4:554–567. doi: 10.3390/nu4060554.
  2. Dubner L., Wang J., Ho L., Ward L., Pasinetti G.M. Recommendations for development of new standardized forms of cocoa breeds and cocoa extract processing for the prevention of Alzheimer’s disease: Role of cocoa in promotion of cognitive resilience and healthy brain aging. J. Alzheimers Dis. 2015;48:879–889. doi: 10.3233/JAD-150536.
  3. Martinez-Gonzalez D., Bonilla-Jaime H., Morales-Otal A., Henriksen S.J., Velazquez-Moctezuma J., Prospero-Garcia O. Oleamide and anandamide effects on food intake and sexual behavior of rats. Neurosci. Lett. 2004;364:1–6. doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2004.03.080.
  4. Jang S., Sun J., Chen P., Lakshman S., Molokin A., Harnly J.M., Vinyard B.T., Urban J.F., Jr., Davis C.D., Solano-Aguilar G. Flavanol-enriched cocoa powder alters the intestinal microbiota, tissue and fluid metabolite profiles, and intestinal gene expression in pigs. J. Nutr. 2016;146:673–680. doi: 10.3945/jn.115.222968.
  5. Kord-Varkaneh H., Ghaedi E., Nazary-Vanani A., Mohammadi H., Shab-Bidar S. Does cocoa/dark chocolate supplementation have favorable effect on body weight, body mass index and waist circumference? A systematic review, meta-analysis and dose-response of randomized clinical trials. Crit. Rev. Food Sci. Nutr. 2019;59:2349–2362. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2018.1451820.
  6. Carnesecchi S., Schneider Y., Lazarus S.A., Coehlo D., Gosse F., Raul F. Flavanols and procyanidins of cocoa and chocolate inhibit growth and polyamine biosynthesis of human colonic cancer cells. Cancer Lett. 2002;175:147–155. doi: 10.1016/S0304-3835(01)00731-5.
  7. Grassi D., Lippi C., Necozione S., Desideri G., Ferri C. Short-term administration of dark chocolate is followed by a significant increase in insulin sensitivity and a decrease in blood pressure in healthy persons. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 2005;81:611–614. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/81.3.611.
  8. Latif R. Chocolate/cocoa and human health: A review. Neth. J. Med. 2013;71:63–68.
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