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At Sacred Earth Medicine, we source a rare and award-winning variety of cacao native to Southern Peru. It is 100% ceremonial grade and comes from a verdant, micro-climate valley nestled in between the Andes and the Amazon. The bean variety is chuncho criollo (often simply referred to as chuncho) which literally means it is native to the region. Chuncho cacao has been used as a sacred source of food and trade by the local indigenous Matsiguenga people dating back to the time of the Incan Empire. Criollo is the same bean variety used by the mystics and shamans of ancient cultures to travel through the veils to other worlds.
Our chuncho cacao is grown on a fully biodynamic and sustainable farm run by a local family who have cultivated the land for generations. The family’s wisdom, love and respect for the revered cacao plants can be felt in every aspect of their farming and production processes. This reverence for the cacao and love for the land is another vital factor in maintaining the vibration of Ceremonial Cacao.
Every stage of production occurs on site at the farm which allows for a very high standard of quality control. And the biodynamic nature of the farm means there is a thoroughly wholistic vision and approach. Not only is the product organic but it is grown in soil that is prepared in the biodynamic method that recognises the value and importance of soil health and quality.
Ceremonial Cacao is made from the beans of the cacao fruit in a process that involves no additives (unlike standard chocolate production). Our farmers are very hands-on. When harvesting the fruit, they personally sort and select based on quality levels, then create batches for us from the highest-grade selections.
Once harvested, the cacao beans are separated from the fleshy pulp sections of the fruit and are then fermented in wooden boxes over four days. The fermented beans are lightly roasted on a wooden stove, husks removed, and ground into a paste. The paste is poured into moulds and solidifies into blocks of ceremonial cacao, then sustainably packaged. This process of fermentation, light roasting and grinding draws out the delicious flavours of the cacao bean and makes it ready for you to experience in its full aroma, mouth-watering goodness.
Most cacao farmers are discouraged (or should we say forced) by the chocolate cartels from growing smaller bean varieties as they provide lower crop yields. But the smaller beans have a much greater potency.
The chuncho criollo bean is a very small bean, packed with flavour which is why it is so highly regarded for premium cacao and chocolate production. The chuncho flavour can vary widely based on the chuncho’s cultivar (a species subtype). Studies have shown that the chuncho variety has an impressive 36 different cultivars in the Southern region of Peru, broken down into 11 main groupings.
On our farm most of these 11 chuncho cultivar groups are grown. Their flavour profiles can be tasted in the fleshy pulp of the fruit (as well as the beans) and range from notes of mango and custard apple to pear, raisins and florals. The variety is huge. And they all taste amazing!
Each batch of our cacao incorporates this yummy range of cultivars. This means our cacao holds a great depth of flavour thanks to the scope of different taste profiles that are combined in each batch. Of course, we believe the great taste of our cacao is further enhanced by the love and care that is infused into it by every person involved, during every step of the creation process!
We specifically chose our pure Ceremonial Cacao bean paste for its potency and high vibration. IxCacao, the Cacao Deva, guided us to this cacao over an eighteen-month journey. It is grown from original, heirloom, mature cacao trees, infused with fervent life force. Farmed without chemicals, ethically sourced and fair trade, this cacao maintains all its medicinal and spiritual properties. Our farmers ceremoniously care for the cacao like it’s part of their family. This is pure, heart-opening Ceremonial Cacao that really is ALIVE with spirit!
Read more about our Ceremonial Cacao.