Break out the chocolate bars, it’s time for a celebration! Cocoa producers from Tumbes, Peru have been honored at the Salon du Chocolat in Paris for their high-quality cocoa.
According to Bernama, The Regional Association of Cocoa Producers of Tumbes (Arprocat) was awarded an International Cocoa Award as part of the Salon du Chocolat’s Cocoa of Excellence program.
Arprocat is an association made up of 324 cocoa farmers from the coastal region of Tumbes in northern Peru. Bernama reports that Arprocat has 600 hectares of land, 400 of which are currently being used for production.
The International Cocoa Awards judge cocoa, not finished chocolate. According to Bernama, this is so judges can more objectively evaluate the quality of the cocoa by controlling for differences worldwide in the chocolate making process. Competitors send in their best cocoa samples, which are then processed into chocolate liquor. Experts choose the best 50 samples from the liquor step, and those are made into chocolate, reports Bernama. 33 expert chocolate tasters then choose the best from those 50 finalists.
15 cocoa producers were honored with International Cocoa Awards, according to Bernama.