The genus Theobroma (or “food of the gods” in Greek) originated millions of years ago in South America, to the east of the Andes. Theobroma has been divided into twenty-two species of which T. cacao is the most widely known. Cocoa is made by processing the dried seeds which can be found within the pods hanging from the cocoa tree.

Cocoa beans are produced in countries along the equator, only 7 countries (Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Ecuador, Cameroon, Nigeria, Indonesia, Brazil) produce altogether over 88% of the world’s cocoa output.

The cocoa market distinguishes three main varieties of cocoa beans: 

  • The great majority being of the Forastero (so-called bulk cocoa) comprising 93.5% of world cocoa production
  • The minority Criollo (so-called fine or flavor cocoa)
  • The third variety known as the Trinitario, widely renowned as the world´s finest cocoa hybrid. It is a unique hybrid collection of types that arose in Trinidad (from crossings between mixed Criollo and mixed Forastero types)

Top-5 grinders in the world;

  1. Côte d’Ivoire
  2. The Netherlands
  3. Indonesia
  4. Germany
  5. The U.S.

Cocoa by-products;

  • Cocoa liquor / paste (cocoa particles suspended in cocoa butter) – product of milling cocoa nibs. Used in chocolate manufacturing with other ingredients
  • Cocoa butter – used in the manufacture of chocolate and in cosmetic products
  • Cocoa press cake – product of pressing cocoa liquor. The product which is left after the cocoa butter has been extracted
  • Cocoa powder (solids) – used as an ingredient in foodstuffs from flavored drinks to desserts, cakes and biscuits

ARASCO is trading cocoa beans and cocoa by-products. Our main origins are Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Ecuador.

Our network allows us to supply any origin, depending on your needs.

ARASCO is committed to sustainable, socially responsible leadership within the industry. To ensure this philosophy we’ve adhered to various certification schemes: Organic (Skal) and Fairtrade. We are also fully engaged in supporting supply chains to become certified.

Cocoa Trading

The trading takes place on two exchanges: New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) and the InterContinental Exchange (ICE) in London. The prices in London are based on cocoa from Africa, while New York bases its prices on the South-Asian market. The prices on the ICE function as a benchmark for global price creation.