Xoco is the first producer to offer single variety, fine flavour cocoa in volume. Our vision is to maximise the flavour potential by planting single variety beans on separate fields. This way, processing can be optimized for the particular variety and the complex flavours of the cocoa bean can be expressed in the chocolate.
This approach will completely change the industry as we know it, as almost all beans in the world today have been planted mixed on every field.
We want people to experience real chocolate and get away from the dull, industrialised one.
Xoco is a privately held company focused on supplying high-end cocoa beans and couverture. The company operates in Central America, mainly in Honduras, Guatemala, Belize and Nicaragua. To realise our vision, we had to reinvent the industry from scratch and go back to the roots. We roamed the Central American forests to identify those cocoa trees with the potential to produce the best gourmet beans.
Only a few hundred old trees were left. They formed the basis of our massive reproduction programme: the largest cocoa grafting operation in history. Xoco operates its own farms, and several hundred farmers – or "outgrowers" – have made exclusive partnership contracts with Xoco.
Since 2007, we have carefully grafted each and every one of the new trees now harvested. The beans from these trees are turned into the most flavourful couverture in the market today.
We offer both direct sales of fermented and dried beans as well as chocolate couverture. We work closely with our customers to ensure the best possible flavour.
Over time, hundreds of farmers – or "outgrowers" – have made exclusive partnership contracts with Xoco and have planted their fields with fine cocoa tree varieties from our nurseries. The farmers are very passionate about, and committed to, the Xoco project.
Typically, the farmers invest 20 to 30 per cent of their land in planting the young cocoa trees. We guarantee all our farmers a good deal and provide technical assistance for the productive lifetime of the trees.
For 30 years he has grown coffee but, since 2008, he has been planting fine cocoa to diversify away from a low-priced commodity product.
All his life he has been producing black beans and corn. In 2010 he planted a small lot with fine cocoa.
Has grown low-altitude coffee all his life. In 2010, he planted two hectares of fine cocoa with Xoco.
On his 150cc motorcycle, he makes three to five farmer visits a day, assisting with pruning and giving advice on drought protection, drainage and other cocoa-farming matters. He also organises the collection of beans in the area.
Produces passion fruit and trades coffee, as well as running his fine cocoa orchard.
Used only to produce coffee, but has recently entered into milk production. He also planted a small fine cocoa farm with Xoco trees in 2010.
Xoco owns and operates its own farms in Central America. Pictured is the flagship farm in Nicaragua which has been planted with the newest cocoa growing techniques (newly planted trees covered with bags for temporary wind sheltering).
The farm uses irrigation and the spacing of trees allows for tractors to move between rows of trees.
The farm is the only of its kind in Central America and will serve as an example for farmers for how to grow fine flavour cocoa more efficiently and in balance with nature.