Thursday 24 September, 2020

Rio Claro farmers launch new Trinitario chocolates

Photo courtesy the Cocoa Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited.

Photo courtesy the Cocoa Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited.

Rio Claro farmers have launched new fine-flavour chocolates made with Trinidad and Tobago’s world-famous Trinitario cocoa.

According to a statement issued by the Cocoa Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago (CDCTTL), the chocolates are available at Persad “The Food King” Supermarket in Rio Claro.

The Rio Claro Fine Flavour Cocoa Fermenters Limited (RCFFCFL) is Rio Claro’s first Microlot cocoa company.

(Photos courtesy the Cocoa Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited.)

“As part of the Cocoa Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited’s (CDCTTL) mandate to organise cocoa farmers into business clusters, the CDCTTL is proud to be at the forefront of the formation of the @Rio Claro Fine Flavour Cocoa Fermenters Limited (RCFFCFL), and wish to congratulate them on their recently launched Trinitario artisan chocolates, which are now available on the shelves of Persad “The Food King” Supermarket, in Rio Claro.”

“The desire to create the first ever chocolate coming out of Rio Claro was what inspired CDCTTL Cocoa Development Officer (CDO), Mr. Roger Poliah, to form a cocoa fermenter association from some of the best cocoa farmers in that area. For Roger, an artisan chocolate bar was the best way to showcase the unique flavour profile of the Rio Claro cocoa varieties to both local and international markets," the company said.

The CDCTTL said the farmers initially just sold wet beans, however they learned to process the beans through fermenting and drying, following international quality standards.

The cocoa farmers making up the Rio Claro Fine Flavour Cocoa Fermenters Ltd are Sabita Mykoo, Neal Julien, Gewan Gangaram, Leroy Chrysostom, Hydar Karim, and Mr and Mrs Gowrie Ragbir.

(Photos courtesy the Cocoa Development Company of Trinidad and Tobago Limited.)

The company said two of these farming families, the Gangarams, and the Ragbirs, placed within the top ten best beans in Trinidad and Tobago at the National Cocoa Awards held earlier this year.

The company said the farmers adhere to the best practices in cocoa harvesting, fermentation and drying, and as a result produce consistently high-quality, uniquely flavoured beans.

The company then engaged the help of Michael Parris, cocoa entrepreneur consultant, who guided them on creating dark chocolate bars from their beans.

The CDCTTL said Poliah visits these Microlot farmers on a weekly basis, and continues to closely monitor their fermentation and drying, ensuring that the beans are of an exquisite flavour and high quality for the value-added products being created.

“The CDCTTL, through their CDO Roger Poliah, assists the RCFFCFL with the marketing of their beans, facilitating international niche chocolatier tours to each farmer’s processing site, sharing technical information on the practices," the company said. 

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