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Cocoa is scientifically known as Theobroma, belonging to the family Malvales. Cocoa is a prominent commercial bean crop in the world.

The word cocoa is derived from Latin, meaning food of god. Cocoa is believed to have originated in Central America and parts of Mexico about a million years ago.

The main three varieties of Cocoa are Forastero, Trinitarios and Criocollo. About 80 percent of global cultivation is of Forastero variety. Among these varieties, Criocollo is the most expensive one, and its production is limited.

In India, the Kerala Agriculture University released seven hybrid varieties of Forastero; they are CCRP – 1, CCRP – 2, CCRP – 3,CCRP – 4, CCRP– 5, CCRP – 6 and CCRP – 7 and 3 hybrids CCRP – 8, CCRP – 9, CCRP – 10. Central Plantation Crops Research Institute released the varieties namely VTLCC-1, VTLCH1, VTLCH2, VTLCH3 and VTLCH4

Cocoa Trading Markets:

Different kinds of products are made from Cocoa, but the main food product is chocolate. Pod husks of the fruit is used to feed animals. Soft drinks and alcohols are the main products made out of Cocoa pulp juice.

Cocoa butter is widely used in soaps, moisturizing cream and other cosmetic products. Cocoa powder is used in production of cakes, pastries, biscuits, sauces, ice creams etc. Cocoa liquor, jam and marmalade can be sorted out from cocoa. Cocoa bean and shell can be used as organic mulch.

Although Cocoa tree can be grown in various types of soil, the best type of soil suitable for better growth is well drained sandy loam soil. From the third year of planting, Cocoa tree starts flowering and it takes 5 to 6 months for the pods to mature. When attaining maturity, the pod colour changes from green to yellow.

Main Cocoa producing states in India are Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

Ivory Coast, Indonesia, Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon, Brazil, Ecuador, Mexico, Dominican Republic and Peru are the cocoa producing countries in the world.

The top exporters of Cocoa Beans are Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria, Ecuador and Cameroon.

The top importers are the Netherlands, United States, Malaysia, Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany.


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