Chocolate is made from cocoa beans that grow in the rainforest regions of the world. It is shipped overseas to wholesale chocolate suppliers who sell it to people for their enjoyment. Chocolate is known to have several health benefits and is a widely regarded holiday treat.
Made from the seed of the cacao tree, chocolate is one of the most widely enjoyed confectionary treats in the world. It was first cultivated in Central America around 1100 B.C. and introduced to Europe by the Spaniards in the 1600s. The Mayans originally consumed chocolate as a bitter beverage before Spain began adding sugar to make it sweet. It was a drink associated with royalty because it was an expensive import often reserved for religious events. The first European chocolate house opened in England in 1657. Soon chocolate was being cultivated in plantations where workers tended, harvested and processed cacao and sugar cane. The Industrial Revolution changed the way chocolate was produced, making it available to a wholesale chocolate suppliers market by cutting the shipping costs, allowing North America to enjoy chocolate imports as well.
Today most of the world’s cocoa beans are produced in the African country of Côte d’Ivoire. Other top producers include Ghana, Brazil, Ecuador, Mexico, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and Togo. Cacao trees require the nutrient-rich soil often found in these rainforest regions. The cultivation process involves a mix of human labor and mechanical manufacturing. Cocoa beans are grown in pods, where they are hand picked, split open and the cocoa beans are removed. From there, the beans are cleaned and fermented in large shallow bins and heated from the sun, where they are periodically mixed over 5-8 days until the beans turn brown. The beans are then dried and packed to ship to chocolate factories. In the factory, beans are roasted, winnowed (removing outside hull and separating beans according to size) and ground into cocoa butter or chocolate. After, they are heated and melted into chocolate liquor and blended with milk and sugar, depending on the desired chocolate (dark, milk or white). The liquor is placed into molds, where it is cools and hardens into shape. It is then ready to be packaged and shipped to wholesale chocolate suppliers. Chocolate needs to be stored in specific temperature and humidity to avoid spoiling.
Chocolate, especially dark chocolate, has its share of health benefits. Cocoa has natural antioxidants because it is a plant-based food. Antioxidants are known to improve cardiovascular health, promote low cholesterol and in some cases, reduce blood pressure. Dark chocolate has high flavanols, which improve blood flow and promote artery health. Cocoa butter contains healthy fats and is rich in minerals such as copper, magnesium and potassium. Wholesale chocolate suppliers have made getting chocolate easy it still needs to be consumed with restraint. Eating dark chocolate has been linked to feelings of pleasure because it contains Phenyl ethylamine (PEA), a compound responsible for boosting endorphins in the brain. In summary, chocolate does have health benefits, but because of sugar and other additives, it’s important to consume in moderation.
Chocolate has a rich history, from being favored by royalty to being vied for by the public. Today it is a staple in our culture made affordable by wholesale chocolate suppliers and is a popular treat during holidays, birthdays or whenever the mood strikes. You will find several unique chocolate varieties on our website, each available for your enjoyment.
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on Thursday, March 7th, 2013 at 8:18 am and is filed under Chocolate.
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