Tobago Cocoa Estate
For hundreds of years, cocoa produced on small farms and large plantations has been a major cash crop of Tobago. Visit a cocoa estate to learn the history and heritage of cocoa and the production process involved in making chocolate. You will learn about how the cacao plant grows and how the cacao beans are processed into chocolate within the unique environment of this tropical island. Some tours will allow you to help with some of the activities like the harvesting, the fermentation and the drying process. There will even be chocolate tasting sessions.
You will be surprised at how much there is to learn about chocolate. Cacao refers to the plant and the products that are made from the seeds that have not been roasted. Cocoa refers to products made after the seeds have been roasted.
It takes about five years for a cacao tree to produce its first seed pods. The cacao pods are the fruit of the cacao tree and they grow directly from the trunk of the tree. They look like small melons. The pulp inside the pods has from 20 to 50 seeds or beans. It takes about 400 cacao beans to make one pound of chocolate.