Cocoa Bean Blend vs. Single

What is a cocoa bean blend or cocoa bean single?

Nevertheless all cocoa beans came from the same plant species known as Theobroma cacao, this species has many varieties around the world and each variety has its own genetic pool. Thus, a variety can be differentiated from another one due to the characteristics expressed by their own genes.


Traditionally, governmental agricultural organizations in cocoa countries encourage farmers to grow several varieties in the same plot. Some of the reasons are to reduce pests and diseases, and to spark particular characteristics of the bean, i.e., fat content, climate tolerance, yield, flavour and so on.


So farmers have been trained to cultivate simultaneously at least 5 varieties. Then, when harvesting, varieties are mixed together and after-harvest processed. The result is a blend of dry cocoa beans that one commonly finds when sourcing cocoa beans.


Rarely happened, a farmer commits to cultivate only one variety of cocoa bean in its land. Instead, scarce plots of one specific genetic pool are cultivated in cases such as heirloom, origin or regional cocoa unique varieties. This is what is known as one  single cocoa bean.