We are very proud to announce that the beans from our cacao farm – Puentespina Farm is now recognized as one of the BEST 50 IN THE WORLD. A total of 166 cacao beans samples were received from 40 countries at the 2017 Edition of the Cocoa Excellence Programme in France! This is a valuable recognition since the focus of the evaluation is on the bean quality – the raw material itself.
This is huge for the cacao industry as this proves that Philippine beans can compete side side with the other top producers from cacao-growing countries. Mabuhay ang magsasakang Pilipino!
The BEST 50 BEAN SAMPLES were processed into chocolates by the international technical committee and celebrated at the Salon du Chocolat in Paris last 28 Oct – 1 Nov.
The Cocoa of Excellence (CoEx) Programme is the entry point for cocoa producers to participate in the International Cocoa Awards (ICA), a global competition recognizing the work of cocoa farmers and celebrating the diversity of cocoa flavours.
Our venture into cacao growing started in 2003 when our founders, Roberto and Charita Puentespina, leased a cacao farm in Malagos, Baguio District, Davao City. A farmer at heart, Charita Puentespina rehabilitated the trees and soon after harvested the cacao pods. We now operate a 70-hectare cacao farm and employ around 80 in-house farmers. In addition to our own harvest, we also source wet cacao beans from small growers in the area to promote sustainability in the community. We also built a training facility on the farm to teach farmers good cacao growing practices.
We grow Trinitario clones, a cross between the Criollo and Forastero varieties, specifically and predominantly the UF 18, BR 25 and PBC 123 clones.
These fine flavor beans are what we use in our award-winning chocolates that have already earned nine (9) international & two (2) local wins to date.