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Centralized Processing

Vertically Integrated from Seed to Bean

Completely Traceable Value Chain

Centralized processing facility. Expert knowledge at every stage. Trusted people in place at Origin.

Our Nurseries

50,000 Cacao Seedling Capacity

 

Fine Flavor Cacao Varietal

 

Sown by hand

 

Environmentally Sustainable Management Practices

 

IMO Organic Certified

 

Quality starts with the careful selection of “mother tree” seeds from select farms in Belize in our own cacao sapling nursery. These nurseries provide healthy and desirable cacao sapling varietals for our farms. During planting, the saplings are carefully selected for each farm considering the micro-climates that exist in the geographic area.  These saplings are used to plant our raw land farms as well as to replace older trees in pre-existing farms which have passed their peak

production cycles. Our nursery is also part of our Social Sustainability program and provides free healthy saplings to local cacao growers.  These new, healthy, and in-demand cacao saplings enable our local cacao growers (currently 204) that participate in our program, to increase the yield of their farms with the finest and most in-demand cacao varietals which, in turn, means more income for themselves and for their families.

Cacao Farms & Harvesting

45,000 Peini cacao trees in 96 acres of planted farmland

 

204 individual local farmers managed by Belize Cacao Traders

 

Certified Organic farms, facilities and processing

 

Environmentally & Sustainably managed

 

Harvest is a vitally important part of our seed-to-bean process.   Our 204 local individual farmers harvest their cacao pods on a weekly basis which are then sold to our BCT bean-buying team at prices

that allow our farmers and their families to prosper. It is critically important that these beans are delivered to our centralized processing depot within 8 hours of being harvested.

Centralized Cacao Fermentation

9.8 Metric tonne capacity per cycle

 

6 - 7 Day traditional fermentation cycle

 

3-Tier wooden box system

 

Systematic evaluation cut tests

 

Monitored for flavor & consistency

 

In the industry cacao fermentation & drying is often handed off to bulk processors who are interested only in mass-production and not fine flavor.  We don’t believe in this. We’re focused on producing only fine flavor 100% Belizean cacao.  To ensure the best quality cacao beans we manage fermentation in-house in our own cacao Fermentation and Drying facility.

The fermentation process is key step in developing the natural fine flavor of our cacao.  This process starts immediately after the pods are harvested and beans extracted from the pods. Upon collection, our buying team verify that the beans are free from any foreign object such as placenta, pieces of cacao husks, rocks or damaged beans. A brix reading is taken to ensure that no water is added to the beans.

Passing the evaluation, the beans are then transferred into BCT approved collection bags, weighed and immediately delivered to our processing facility.

At our central processing facility the wet beans are re-checked for any foreign objects that may affect the fermentation process and weighed before they are placed in cascading 3-tier custom-built wooden fermentation boxes.

The beans are fermented for approximately 6 days following a fermentation protocol established specifically for the characteristics of each batch. Cut tests and temperature readings are recorded to monitor the fermentation progress and adjustments are made to achieve the well fermented cacao beans worthy of the Peini brand.

Centralized Passive Solar Drying

Direct and indirect sun drying

Precise drying further develops subtle flavor notes

 

Systematic evaluation cut tests

 

Measured for precise moisture content

 

Monitored for flavor & consistency

 

Our beans are dried until they reach a moisture content of 6.5% and we do this using passive solar energy.  Sometimes this is challenging in a sub-tropical climate with high humidity, especially during inclement weather conditions. Under bright, sunny conditions this can be achieved in 6 days.  This slow drying process is important to producing fine flavor cacao.

Our purpose-built proprietary drying facility with roll out drying racks allow for consistent drying with constant airflow and direct and indirect sunlight. Our beans are constantly monitored and turned by a team of experienced post-harvest personnel led by our Quality Control Manager, Samuel Tsui.  The dried beans are then aged for various time frames which further develops their flavor profiles.