Our Bean to Bar chocolate bars start as cacao beans and are sourced directly from the small farmers that grow them.
By working directly with the farms we not only know exactly who raised our beans, but we can also make sure the farmers receive a fair price for their beans, effectively cutting out the middle man.
The beans themselves are very different from the beans that make up most of the chocolate consumed in the U.S. The most common bean is called CCN-51 and produces excellent yields, is disease resistant, and is so bitter it must be processed with an alkali solution to neutralize the acidity.
On the other hand our beans are unique to their own region of origin and are only grown and processed on a small scale, allowing us to select the very best varieties of beans for our delicious chocolate.
The common CCN-51 bean is grown on large monoculture plantations, whereas our farmers practice multi-species permaculture while working in harmony with the native plants.Therefore, we believe our chocolate bars are of a much higher quality than even certified organic chocolate bars.
The farmers we work with do not use herbicides or pesticides and as an added assurance, the ingredients of our chocolate bars have been tested by a certified lab for the presence of glyphosate and so far none has been found.
Once the beans are harvested they are then ready to be fermented.
This is done in the native region of the bean and is a very important step. We work with the farms to perfect their fermentation process, which is yet another benefit to working directly with the growers.
After fermenting, the raw beans are dried and then shipped to the U.S.
The task of creating beautiful chocolate now becomes our responsibility and this is done on a very small scale.
First, the beans are hand sorted for quality and any that do not meet our standards are removed.
Next, the beans are expertly roasted to bring out the full flavor.
Then, we crack the beans with a hand roller to separate the nibs from the shell, which is further removed by winnowing. The nibs are ground into a paste and then sugar is added.