… a very special and fascinating fruit in the world
Cocoa was discovered 5.300 years ago in southeastern Ecuador. In 1753, Swedish Botanist Carl Linnaeus named the cocoa tree as Theobroma cocoa.
8 interesting and strong facts about cocoa and cocoa tree
- A cocoa tree can grow up to 10 meters long, but people don’t let it grow longer than 4 meters.
- The flowers of the cocoa tree grow directly on the trunk, are about the size of an olive and have different colors. They can be either white or rose, yellow or red. Very beautiful to see.
- The tree begins to bloom when it is about 4 years old and continues to bloom all year round. Even though the tree has been blooming for so long, the tree only delivers 30 to 40 fruits per year.
- The cocoa powder and butter ware discovered in 1828 by a Dutchman Casparus van Houten. He discovered how the fat could be removed from the beans using potassium hydroxide. Cocoa mass, butter and powder became important ingredients for chocolate products.
- Fernando Cortez, the Spanish conquistador, was the first person who brought a large batch of cocoa beans to Europe in 1528.
- The Dutch people are known worldwide as seafarers and have played a major role in cocoa trade in history. Many factories were in Zeeland, and Amsterdam is still the most important world port for cocoa trade.
- Also, an interesting fact is that the cocoa beans served as legal tender. The value of cocoa as a means of payment was enormous: a rabbit cost 10 beans at the time and you could buy a turkey for 100 beans.
- The Aztec Emperor Moctezuma II made his people pay taxes with a certain amount of cocoa beans. Money almonds, that is what the Spaniards called the cocoa beans in the treasure rooms of Emperor Montezuma.