Lachuá, Guatemala - 2016 Harvest
Region: Alta Verapaz, Guatemala
Certification: Organic, as of October 2016!
Grainpro, hand sorted
Warehouse: New Jersey and Oakland
Fermentation rate: 75% deeply fermented, 15% fermented, 10% underfermented
Fat content: 54.5%
Beans per 100 grams: 86
Harvest period: Peak harvest Jan-May
Clonal type: a mix of trinitarios, upper Amazon foresteros and amelonados, with some interesting presence of Nacional
Awards: Int’l Chocolate Awards Sirene 2015 & 2016; Northwest Chocolate Sirene 2015
Farmers in this region live in the area around Laguna Lachuá, a pristine lake in the middle of a national park in the Alta Verapaz department. The Lachuá associations are part of a protection program for the national park reserve – the Laguna Lachuá Reserve. Farmers here are Q'eqchi Maya, who grow cardamom and corn, as well as cacao. Many farmers still live entirely off the grid, in areas without electricity or phone signal. Clonal varieties include a mix of trinitarios, upper Amazon forasteros, and amelonados, with some presence of Nacional. With technical and market support from Cacao Verapaz, the cacao from this region has quickly become renowned in the craft chocolate market. In 2017 Cacao Verapaz is deepening the connection with the three Lachuá smallholder farmers associations by hiring full time staff to monitor and control the fermentation and drying process. This is part of a larger effort to maintain and continue to improve quality and consistency in these lots. We find the bean to have a bright fruit flavor with light acidity and a brown fruit finish.