For longer than I care to remember we have been talking about visiting Suriya Cocoa Farm in Makham, Chanthaburi province. Last weekend, we finally got ourselves over there.
The guys at Thai Cocoa Distribution set up a contact for us and we met Khun Bum at her cocoa farm.
It’s been dry here for a long time, but as we drove through Khlung we had a couple of brief downpours, but we’re not complaining. The drive was only 30 minutes door to door, so I’m still kicking myself we hadn’t visited months ago.
The cocoa trees are about 9 years old and all we saw were heavy with pods. She picked one right of the tree for me to eat fresh, which was surprisingly tasty.
Cocoa Harvesting and Processing
The trees on this farm are harvested twice a month. Many of her neighbours also grow cocoa and sell to Khun Bum. She ferments and dries the bean on site. The dry cocoa beans are then sold to many of the Thai bean to bar chocolate makers including Kad Kakoa, SiaMaya and Xoconat to name but three and they are also exported to the USA.
We of course bought our first consignment from here.
We viewed the nursery where Khun Bum has thousands of cocoa saplings for sale at 20 Baht each. She gives lots of growing advice to those who purchase from her and will also buy the fruit from you later. So if you are looking to grow cocoa in Thailand as a cash crop but didn’t know where you would sell the fruit, now you do.
Organic cocoa commands a much higher price too. So for a 20 Baht investment, you will make a very healthy and delicious return year after year.
The trees are Chumpon verity and look very healthy. We bought half a dozen. Some we will introduce to our collection on Anarchy Farm and a couple we are gifting to our friends on Koh Chang at Peek Kla Kah Khang Farm.
Beans, Beans, are Good for your Heart
Some of our trees have just started to produce a few pods, but we are still a good way off where we will be able to produce our own tree to bar chocolate made in Trat.
So we bought a bag of beans to roast at home and we have our Premier Malanger arriving any day now. So we are getting close to the point where we can soon start experimenting with chocolate.
Suriya Cocoa Farm