The artisanal chocolate market has grown in recent years, as consumers seek high-quality, uniquely tasted and sustainably produced products. This growing demand provides opportunities for entrepreneurs and producers who wish to venture into this expanding opportunity.

Artisanal chocolate production has many health benefits, as it can maintain the purity of cocoa by up to 90%, turning it into chocolate rich in vitamins and minerals.

In this article, together with our advisor specialized in farms Alfonso Sancho, we tell you all about the production of artisanal chocolate in Costa Rica.

Artisanal chocolate production

How is chocolate produced?

Alfonso Sancho has a venture with the concept “from the farm to the chocolate bar”. And the stages from harvesting to packaging are divided like this:

  • The harvest: The first step is to select high-quality cocoa beans. These beans undergo a fermentation and sun-drying process to develop the characteristic flavors of chocolate. All with very curated and sustainable procedures.

  • Preparation of the dough: The second step is to grind the seed to prepare the raw material that becomes dough or ‘cocoa liquor’. The cocoa dough is refined to reduce the size of the particles and obtain a smoother texture. This helps develop the flavors and improve the texture of the chocolate.

  • Molding and cooling: The cocoa undergoes a heating and cooling process that allows it to solidify to give it the desired shape, it can also be decorated with additional ingredients, such as nuts, dried fruits or caramel. This process is carried out in a laboratory that allows all the necessary care not to ruin or contaminate the product.

  • Packaging: Once solidified, it is carefully packaged for presentation and preservation. The quality of the packaging and the story allows to transmit the message that will reach those who consume the product.

The production of artisanal chocolate can vary depending on the methods and recipes used by each chocolatier. The main thing is that the seed is produced on a farm that has the climatic and altitude conditions necessary to harvest the best seeds.

Each stage requires meticulous attention and technical know-how to achieve high-quality, exceptionally tasteful chocolate.

The start of a successful business!

Alfonso Sancho is an agricultural economist, and throughout his professional career, he has specialized in the knowledge of productive farms and production processes. The idea of starting his own farm came after long research on cocoa production since it is a very competitive market with excellent growth potential in Costa Rica.

Thanks to his expertise, he has managed to combine his knowledge in agricultural matters with a passion. The quality and flavor of the chocolate are carefully analyzed from the harvest.

They currently produce dark chocolate bars, in cocoa concentrations of 62% 68% and 72%, chocolates with filling, milk-chocolate in a  version of 48% or 54% cocoa. In addition to chocolates in simple and small bar for bakery.

Roasted cocoa nibs from specific batches of cocoa by area and variety are also offered.

Quality comes from the farm. If the cocoa beans are of good variety and quality (fine and aroma), with a good fermentation and drying of the seeds we are guaranteed half the way.

The other half is what the chocolatier decides to put into practice, the ingredients to choose and of course, the packaging and marketing strategy that also require a lot of detail.

More about the product & information about the process:

Chocolate is worked to order. Orders can be made through WhatsApp, 22 days  in advance.

The official website is under construction right now, and the idea is to take the product to markets such as hotels and restaurants. Offering unique chocolates for those who want an exclusive artisanal chocolate experience.

This 2023 is working on packaging, branding and presentations. Without a doubt a challenge with flavor!

The best part about making artisanal chocolate is that at each stage of production there are unique events that determine aroma, flavor, and quality. From the farm, to the final product, everything is unique and particular.

Entering the cocoa dryer is also an experience that makes the imagination fly!  However, as a chocolate apprentice, the best part is the satisfaction and pleasure of having transformed an agricultural product into an extremely delicious artistic experience.

The production of artisan chocolate (or any consumer product) requires specialized knowledge, investment in equipment, and quality raw materials to achieve excellence and continuous improvement. If you are interested in investing in productive farms throughout the country, do not hesitate to contact our specialized farm advisor.

If you are ready to jump and turn a dream into reality, invest wisely with Nativu!