Evaluation


GRADER METHOD

CACAO QUALITY ANALYSIS

Chloe Doutre Roussel was hired as a consultant to develop the laboratory and train our staff in quality analysis.

Each lot of cocoa is analyzed in our laboratory in Caracas, using the FCCI (Fine Cacao and Chocolate Institute) protocol.

We take a representative sample of raw cocoa of each lot and develop a technical sheet with the organoleptic characteristics of the sample.

VISUAL AND OLFACTORY ANALYSIS – WHOLE BEANS

  • Humidity percentage.
  • Aroma profile (Olfactory).
  • Average size and weight.
  • External defects.
  • Cut test:
  • Mouldy/Germinated/Infested.
  • Different levels of fermentation (%)
  • Blond beans percentage.

ORGANOLEPTIC ANALYSIS- GROUND RAW BEANS

We follow the FCCI protocol and form to prepare and then analyse the aromas and taste of the raw cacao beans: Forty Five (45) seconds in the Pop Corner (shaking vertically). Ten (10) seconds in the Coffee Grinder (shaking constantly).

Each member of our sensorial analysis team tastes the freshly ground raw cacao and fills  individually one FCCI form. The team tastes again this cacao with some sugar to bring out some details in the aromas (preparation should target: 75% cacao / 25% sugar). Results are then shared and discussed within the team and a unique consensual form is developed for each lot number. These results are shared with the teams at the post harvest facilities to define any necessary amendements to the fermentation /drying/storage process in future batches.

ORGANOLEPTIC ANALYSIS- LICOR AND CHOCOLATE

Our laboratory is fully equipped to allow the production of lots of two (2) to three (3) kilograms of cocoa liquor and chocolate.

The FCCI form, modified with characteristics for the specific organoleptic analysis of liquor and chocolate. However, liquor and chocolate are only developed for specialty cocoas or customer order. They are not systematic as roasting strongly influences the aromatic profile of cocoa and companies often have their own specific roasting parameters and equipment.

CUTTING ANALYSIS          

We take a random sample of cocoa beans and the almonds are cut longitudinally in half, this procedure is carried out with the use of a guillotine or scalpel, in such a way that the internal surface of the same can be seen.

This process is performed to examine the following characteristics:

  • Fermented grains.
  • Creole grains.
  • Violet grains.
  • Slate grains.
  • Defective Grains (Mold / Infested / Fungi / Sprouts).