Cocoa – Theobroma cacao
Dual tastes from the Tropics
Each part of cocoa has its own job – Cocoa juice is sweet and a natural sugar replacer, while cocoa beans carry the bitter chocolate taste.
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Sugar can drain critical vitamins and minerals from the body, leading to crave for sweets. Cocoa juice is a natural sugar replacer since it is a powerful source of chromium, a mineral that is believed to reduce sugar cravings and improve insulin function. As an artificial sugar replacer, cocoa allows products to have Clean Label. Further, the fruition has a high zinc content, being able to assist in an effective metabolization of sugar and carbs.
Cocoa nibs have a bitter and earthy flavour, while the cocoa pulp has a light and bitter-sweet taste. The texture of the fruit is crunchy like coffee beans.
The “mood food” is a new trend about products that can change people’s mood, like chocolate. However, healthier options with functional actions, such as cocoa, can here find a good market opportunity. Products with cocoa beans can have the desired chocolate taste while cocoa pulp acts as a natural sweetener, allowing Clean Labelling.
Origin and Producer
One cocoa tree produces about 20-25 fruits, which grow directly from the trunk. To separate the pulp from the seeds, the fruits are fermented. Cocoa trees grow in a limited geographical zone around the Equator line. Originally from the rainy Amazonian region, in South America, today nearly 70% of the world crop is grown in West Africa.