Beverages and Stimulants
cocoa tree flourishes in the dense shade of warm rain
forests in its natural habitat and hence can be cultivated
in all similar climatic conditions. The tree cannot withstand
high winds, drought or sudden fall in temperature. The
crop requires well-distributed rainfall. The minimum requirement
of rainfall is about 100-150 cm per annum. Situations
where the temperature falls below 10°C or rises above
38°C are unfavourable although minor deviations from
the above limit can be adjusted by shade and irrigation.
High wind velocity causes considerable mechanical damage
is grown at altitude up to 900 m above MSL though it
is possible to grow the crop even in much higher elevations
under sheltered conditions.
best soil for cocoa is forest soil rich in humus. The
soil should allow easy penetration of roots and capable
of retaining moisture during summer. Clay loams, loams
and sandy loams are suitable. Shallow soils should be
can be propagated by seed and vegetative means.
It is desirable to collect seeds from biclonal or polyclonal
seed gardens involving superior self-incompatible parents
to ensure genetic superiority of planting materials.
Polyclonal and biclonal seed gardens have been established
at CCRP farm of the Kerala Agricultural University,
Vellanikkara and Kidu farm of CPCRI and seeds and seedlings
are being supplied to growers. If seeds cannot be procured
from such seed gardens, mother plants for collection
of seeds may be selected based on the following criteria:
Trees of Forastero type having medium or large pods
of not less than 350 g weight or 400 cc volume, green
in colour when immature, having smooth or shallow furrows
on the surface without prominent constriction at the
neck should be selected. Yield of pods should be not
less than 100 per year.
(2) Husk thickness of pods to be not more than 1 cm.
(3) Pod value (number of pods to give 1 kg wet beans)
to be not more than 12.
(4) Number of beans per pod to be not less than 35.
(5) Bean dry weight to be not less than 1 g.
lose viability within a week of harvest of pods. Seeds
are to be sown immediately after extraction from the
pods. Viability of the beans can be extended for some
more days if freshly extracted seeds are stored in moist
charcoal and packed in polybags. Other alternative is
extracting beans, removing the testa and packing in
Selection of planting materials
When seedlings are used for planting, select only vigorous
and healthy seedlings produced from polyclonal seed
garden or selected mother plants as described earlier.
When budded plants are used, select two or more clones
for planting as the use of a single clone can lead to
poor production due to the existence of self-incompatibility
three varietal types viz., Criollo, Forastero and
Trinitario are recognized, only Forastero types are
known to perform well under Indian conditions. Breeding
work initiated at the Kerala Agricultural University
since 1979 has resulted in the release of seven improved
clones of Forastero type. These are CCRP 1, CCRP 2,
CCRP 3, CCRP 4, CCRP 5, CCRP 6 and CCRP 7. These improved
clones are suitable for cultivation in different cocoa
growing tracts of the country and also in the warm
tropical areas especially under the shade of coconut.
All these clones are tolerant to vascular streak dieback
and have yield potential in the range from 55 to 180
pods per tree per year and mean yield from 38 to 78
pods per tree per year. During 2002, three hybrids
viz., CCRP 8, CCRP 9 and CCRP 10 were released. These
have mean yields of 90, 105 and 79 pods per tree per
year. These are also tolerant to vascular streak dieback
is highly cross pollinated and growing of different
varieties adjacent to each other must be encouraged
so as to achieve maximum fruit set and yield realization.
Cocoa is usually planted under coconut and arecanut
plantations in India. Shade levels under coconut canopy
are highly variable depending mainly on the spacing
of coconut, extent of canopy development and age of
palms. It is estimated that light infiltration through
coconut canopy ranges from about 30 to 80 per cent depending
upon these factors. Based on this, the general recommendation
is as follows:
If a choice is possible, a coconut plantation that will
let in more light through the canopy may be chosen for
2. If the light infiltration is over 50 per cent, it
may be beneficial to provide additional shade using
temporary shade plants like banana.
The seedlings / budded clones are usually planted in
the interspaces of coconut / arecanut. Give a spacing
of 3 to 4.5 m. The crop is best grown with 50 per cent
light intensity in the early stages. In the early life
of the plants, planting of quick growing plants like
banana and tapioca can provide temporary shade.
Time of sowing
Though the seeds will germinate at any time of the year,
seeds may preferably be sown by December-January, so
that 4-6 month old seedlings become available for planting
Seeds are to be sown with hilum-end down or to be sown
flat. Sowing is to be as shallow as to just cover the
seeds with soil. Removal of pulp may enhance the speed
of germination, but the extent of additional advantage
is only marginal. Seeds start germination in about a
week and germination may continue for another one week.
Percentage of germination may be around 90.
nursery is to be located in a heavily shaded area, which
allows only 25-50 per cent sunlight. Regular watering
is necessary to keep the soil moist.
are transplanted after 4-6 months. Only vigorous seedlings
are to be used and based on height and stem girth, 25%
poor seedlings may be rejected. When seedlings are grown
under heavy shade, hardening for 10 days by exposing
to higher illumination may be necessary before transplanting.
In view of the high variability exhibited by seedling
progenies, vegetative propagation is preferred for large
scale planting. Though vegetative propagation of cocoa
by budding, rooting of cuttings and grafting are feasible,
the widely accepted method in India is budding.
for budding are to be collected from high yielding,
disease resistant elite plants. Shoots having brown
bark and just hardened leaves are selected as bud wood.
Scions are preferably procured by cutting off lamina
of all the leaves of the selected scion shoot to a distance
of about 30 cm from the tip. After 10 days when the
petioles have fallen off, these scion shoots are cut
and used for budding immediately. Bud wood can be stored
by dipping in benzyl chloride followed by washing in
water and then sealing the cut ends using molten wax.
Bud wood is then wrapped in moist cotton wool and in
turn in wet tissue paper or blotting paper and packed
in boxes with wet packing material. The packet is then
covered using polythene sheets. Storage life of the
bud wood can be extended up to 10 days by this method.
As far as possible, bud wood is to be collected from
chupons as those produced from fans may develop into
bushy plants with spreading habit. Rootstock, six to
twelve months old may be selected in such a way that
scion and rootstock are of the same thickness. Different
successful methods include T, inverted T, patch, and
modified Forkert methods. Patch budding is adopted in
the Kerala Agricultural University.
budding method consists of removing a patch of about
2.5 cm length and 0.5 cm width from the rootstocks,
preparing a bud patch of 2.5 cm length and 0.5 cm width
from the bud wood and inserting it into the rootstock
and tying firmly with polythene tape. After three weeks,
if there is bud-take, polythene tape is removed; a vertical
cut is made half way through the stem above the bud
and is snapped back. The snapped root stock portion
is cut back after the bud has grown to a shoot and at
least two leaves have hardened. It is then allowed to
grow for a further period of three to six months after
which they are transplanted. Under normal conditions,
success can be around 70-90 per cent.
and method of planting
Raising cocoa as a pure crop is not recommended especially
in Kerala due to high pressure on land. Cocoa is planted
as an intercrop in coconut and arecanut gardens. In
coconut, depending upon the spacing adopted, one or
two rows of cocoa can be planted in between two rows
of coconut i.e., two rows where the spacing is more
than 8 m and one row otherwise, the plant distance for
cocoa being 2.7 to 3 m. When two-row system is adopted,
the seedlings may be planted in zigzag or triangular
arecanut where the normal spacing is 2.7 m, cocoa is
planted at the centre of four areca palms along alternate
rows of interspaces only. Pits of 50 x 50 x 50 cm are
dug, allowed to weather for one month and refilled with
topsoil and 15-20 kg of compost or farm yard manure
to ground level. The planting hole should be sufficient
to hold the soil ball of the polybag. Tear off the polybags
carefully, place the soil ball with the seedlings in
the planting hole with minimum disturbance and press
the soil around firmly. Planting should coincide with
the onset of monsoon, but in places where irrigation
is resorted to, flexibility in the time of planting
of clonal plants derived from fan shoots
Budded plants from fan shoots have diffuse branching
system and bushy growth habit. This type of growth causes
difficulties in carrying out cultural operations and
harvesting. If a better shape of the plant is desired,
appropriate formation pruning may be necessary. This
involves identification of a chupon arising from a fan
shoot, allowing it to grow and removing the original,
lower fan-like shoots in stages. This, however, has
to be done slowly as an early drastic pruning will inhibit
Pruning and training
Cocoa grows in a series of storeys, the chupon or vertical
growth of the seedling terminating at the jorquette
from where four to five fan branches develop. Further
vertical growth is continued through a side chupon that
arises from a point just below the jorquette which again
jorquettes after growing to some height. Left for it,
the plant will grow to a height of 8-10 m repeating
this process of jorquetting and chupon formation 3-5
times. When cocoa is grown as an intercrop in coconut
and arecanut plantation, it is desirable to restrict
the growth to one tier formed at a convenient height
preferably above the head level of the workers. When
jorquetting takes place at lower levels this can be
raised by nipping off all the fan branches and allowing
one chupon to develop and grow further to jorquette
at the desired height. After this is achieved, further
vertical growth is arrested through periodical removal
intensity of pruning is to be decided by the nature
of growth of individual trees, shade intensity, growth
of the companion crops etc. In the early stages, pruning
is done to give a particular shape to the tree. After
the establishment of the trees in the garden, prune
them to the extent of retaining only the required number
of leaves (20-30 leaves per developing pod). Removal
of secondary branches from the centre should be restricted
only to those trees growing in excess shade.
This technique is useful to rejuvenate old and unproductive
cocoa plants and also to convert genetically poor yielders
to high yielders. This consists of snapping back the
desired trees below the jorquette after cutting half
way. The snapped canopy continues to have contact with
the trunk. A number of chupons would arise below the
point of snapping and this is triggered by the breakage
of apical dominance and continued connection with the
snapped canopy. Patch budding as described earlier may
be done on three to four vigorous and healthy shoots
using scions from high yielding, disease resistant clones
and the remaining chupons are removed. The polythene
tape is removed three weeks after budding and the stock
portion above the bud union is snapped back. The snapped
portion is removed after two hardened leaves develop
from the bud. When sufficient shoots are hardened, canopy
of the mother tree can be completely removed. Because
of the presence of an established root system and the
trunk with reserve food, the top worked trees grow much
faster and give prolific yield one year after the operation.
Though top working can be done in all seasons, it is
preferable to do it in rain-free period in irrigated
gardens. For rainfed situations, it may preferably be
done after the receipt of pre-monsoon showers.
worked trees start yielding heavily from the second
year onwards. About 50 per cent improved yield is obtained
in the second year and about 100 per cent improved yield
in the third year. Loss of crop for one year during
the operation is compensated by bumper crop in the coming
years. The main stem will continue to belong to the
older plant and fruits borne on this area belong to
the poor yielder. Better yields are however obtained
from the fan branches of the high yielding clone used
for top working.
grows well as a rainfed crop under conditions of well-distributed
rainfall and irrigation is not necessary. If sufficient
moisture is not present in the soil due to prolonged
drought or failure of rains, irrigation is to be given
once in five days. Irrigation, however, helps in better
growth of plants and precocity in bearing.
Apply N:P2O5:K2O in two equal split doses in April-May
and September-October, @ 100:40: 140 g / tree / year.
N:P2O5:K2O may be applied @ 200:80:280 g / plant / year,
in trees yielding more than 50 fruits per year. Dolomite
@ 100 g / plant / year may be applied to plants from the
third year onwards.
irrigated conditions, the yearly dose may be split into
four and applied during April-May, September-October,
December and February-March.
1/3 of adult dose during the first year of planting,
2/3 during second year and full dose from the third
fertilizers in circular basins with a radius of 25 cm
during the first year. Gradually increase the radius
of the basin to 120 cm by the third year. Apply fertilizers
in the entire area of 1.5 m radius around the tree followed
by forking in.
showing zinc deficiency symptoms (narrowing of leaves,
sickle leaf formation, green vein banding, chlorosis
in the interveinal areas) should be sprayed with 0.5
to 1.5% ZnSO4 three times a year.
the first three or four years after planting, it is
essential to keep the field free from weeds. Maintenance
and regulation of shade should be carried out promptly.
During the establishment phase of the crop particularly
in summer, provide mulching with materials like chopped
banana sheath, coconut husk, cocoa husk etc. to conserve
moisture in conditions of direct insolation. A mature
cocoa plantation should form a proper canopy, which
will be dense enough to prevent weed growth. Operations
such as pruning and regulation of shade should be attended
to in time.
borer (Zeuzera coffeae)
Larvae burrow into the main stem of young plants and
fan shoots of older trees, causing drying up.
off and burn affected fan shoots. Spray carbaryl 0.1%
on the main stems of young plants as a prophylactic
squirrel (Funambulus sp.)
The squirrels gnaw the bronzing pods and extract the
beans along with mucilaginous pulp.
the crop just when bronzing is visible in the pod furrows.
Mechanical protection of the pods can be ensured by
covering them with punched polybags (150 gauge) smeared
with bitumen-kerosene mixture.
Rats are serious pests in densely planted coconut gardens
with cocoa as an intercrop. They inhabit the coconut
palm crowns and descend during night and cause damage
to pods. Nature of damage is similar to that caused
with anticoagulant rodenticides in the garden is recommended.
Rain-proof preparations are to be used. Tie fumarin
bars (rain-proof) on the base of an inner frond of coconut.
Set up bamboo traps with bow attachment on the crown
weevils (Myllocerus viridanus)
Adults skeletonise the foliage and this is serious in
young plants during July-September. Spray undersurfaces
of the foliage with fenitrothion 0.05%, quinalphos 0.025%
or fenthion 0.05%.
bugs (Planococcus citri and Rastrococcus sp.)
The bugs occur in cherelles, developing pods and shoots
and de-sap the tissues. This can be controlled by spot
application of quinalphos 0.025% or phosalone 0.1%.
Colonies of pink aphids occur ventrally on the leaves
of chupon shoot. Tender shoots are also damaged.
off the flaccid leaves along with the shoots and destroy
beetle (Popillia sp. and Leucopholis sp.)
Grubs feed on the roots of freshly planted seedlings
causing wilting. Apply carbaryl 10% DP at 10 g per pit
around freshly planted seedlings.
The pods are damaged by Helopeltis sp.
blight (Phytophthora palmivora)
The symptoms develop on the leaves and stem of the seedlings
or budded plants. On leaves, small water-soaked lesions
appear which later coalesce resulting in the blightening
of leaves. On stem, water-soaked linear lesions develop
initially and later turn to black colour. Stem infection
develops at any point on the stem causing the death
of seedlings / budded plants.
and destroy severely affected seedlings. Improve drainage
and adjust shade. Spray with 1% Bordeaux mixture or
0.3% copper oxychloride or 0.3% potassium phosphonate
just before the onset of monsoon and thereafter at frequent
pod rot / black pod (Phytophthora palmivora, P. citrophthora,
Fruits at all stages of maturity may be attacked by
P. palmivora. The first visible symptom is the appearance
of a circular brown spot, which enlarges concentrically,
and evenly to involve the whole pod surface. Ultimately
the colour of the affected pod becomes dark brown or
black. In immature pods, the discolouration spreads
internally with rotting of the beans. The beans in mature
pods may remain partly or wholly unaffected.
remove and destroy all dried up and infected pods. Spray
1% Bordeaux mixture with adhesive (rosin washing soda
preparation) with the onset of monsoon and also at frequent
intervals. Provide proper drainage and regulate shade
to increase aeration.
pod rot / charcoal pod rot (Lasiodiplodia theobromae)
The disease occurs more frequently during dry season.
Pods of all stages are affected. The symptoms appear
as pale yellow spots from the stalk-end or tip of the
pod. Later, the lesions enlarge and cover the entire
pod having chocolate brown colour. In due course, the
whole pod develops a black sooty appearance due to formation
of spores of the fungus.
the disease is more common on pods of plants under stress,
better management practices will reduce the incidence
of the disease. Remove all affected pods and spray 1%
pod rot (Colletotrichum gloeosporioides)
The disease causes rotting of immature pods. Infection
starts from the stalk-end of the pod and spreads towards
tip as dark brown discolouration with a diffused yellow
halo. Internal tissues of the pod also show discolouration.
The whole pod turns to black and remains on the tree
in a mummified form. Sometimes, infection may start
from parts other than the stalk region as dark brown
all infected pods and spray with 1% Bordeaux mixture
or 0.3% copper oxychloride or mancozeb.
canker (Phytophthora palmivora)
The earliest symptom is the appearance of greyish brown
water-soaked lesion with dark brown to black margin
anywhere on the stem. A reddish brown liquid oozes out
from the lesions, which later dry up to form a rusty
deposit. The internal tissues beneath the outer greyish
brown lesion appear as reddish brown. The wood shows
greyish brown discolouration with black streaks. Wilting
occurs, when canker girdles the affected stem / branches.
the disease is detected early, remove and destroy the
affected tissues completely and apply Bordeaux paste.
Wilted branches should be cut and removed. Since canker
mainly develops from pod rot caused by Phytophthora,
proper control measures of Phytophthora pod rot will
help in reducing incidence of the disease.
disease (Corticium salmonicolor)
The disease appears as a pinkish powdery coating on
the stem of affected plants. The pink colour represents
profuse conidial production by the fungus. The fungal
growth may rapidly spread and girdle the stem, so that
the distal parts are affected. The extent to which the
leaf may wilt, turn brown and fall depends on the part
of the tree, which is affected. The disease mainly affects
the forking region and the damage is localized. Splitting
of the bark on the affected region is also noticed.
Sometimes, the fungus produces pustules (Necator stage),
which are orange red in colour and are arranged in rows
along the stem.
all the infected and dried branches. Apply Bordeaux
paste at the fork region and at the cut ends of the
twigs and spray with 1% Bordeaux mixture before the
onset of monsoon. Repeat spraying again once or twice
during the monsoon season according to the intensity
of the disease.
streak dieback (VSD) (Oncobasidium theobromae)
The first indication of the disease is the characteristic
chlorosis of one or two leaves on the second or third
growth flush behind the tip. Tip leaves show symptoms
first only in very young seedlings or in slow growing
seedlings or branches. The patterns on the diseased
leaves develop into small sharply defined green spots
scattered over a yellow background. Diseased leaves
fall within a few days after turning yellow. Leaves
above and below the first diseased leaf soon begin to
show yellowing with green patches and these also fall
off finally resulting in dieback of the infected branches.
Leaf scars from the fall of chlorotic leaves are sometimes
covered by a white, loosely adherent fruiting body of
the fungus. These fruiting bodies have been found only
on leaf scars and adjacent bark in the diseased region
of cocoa stems. If the diseased stem is split longitudinally,
the xylem is found to be discoloured by brown streaks.
and remove all infected twigs. Prune off all affected
branches 30 cm below the last point of visible vascular
streak of the stem to prevent further spread within
the plant. Grow VSD tolerant cocoa types.
thread blight (Marasmius scandens)
The white mycelial threads of the fungus spread longitudinally
and irregularly along the surface of the stem of young
branches and enter the leaf along the petioles. On the
leaf lamina it spreads extensively and forms a much-branched
system of fine threads. The affected leaves turn dark
brown and such dead leaves eventually get detached from
the stem, but are found suspended by the mycelial thread.
Extensive death of the young branches and suspended
leaves in rows are the common field symptoms.
and destroy the affected plant parts. Avoid heavy shade.
Spray 1% Bordeaux mixture.
takes about 170 days for a cocoa pod to develop from
formation to maturity. During the period from 70-140
days after pollination, the size of pods and their fat
and sugar content increase rapidly. Ripening takes about
25 days, during which, the pods change colour depending
on the variety. Pods remain suitable for harvesting
for fairly long time after they have ripened. Hence,
it is possible to have harvest of sufficient number
of pods at a time by either delaying the harvest of
early-ripened pods or harvest of pods, which are fully
ripened. Harvesting should be done at regular intervals
rather than daily, once in 7-10 days. Avoid over-ripening
of pods. The discards at the harvest can be left in
the garden either in the open during summer or in pits
at different sites in the rainy season, or they can
be incorporated in the compost. Pod husks from the fermentary
can also be used similarly as a good source of organic
are removed by cutting with a sickle-sharp knife, without
damaging the cushion from which it is developed. After
2-3 days, they are split by banging them against some
hard objects. Opening the pods with a knife damages
the beans. During the period between harvesting and
splitting, pre-fermentation activity inside the pod
is hastened, which improves later fermentation. Beans
from the split pods are scraped out with fingers. Portions
of placenta, and broken, germinated, caked, parthenocarpic
and undeveloped beans are removed. On an average, 10-12
pods give 1 kg of wet beans and 3 kg of wet beans (from
30-36 pods) give 1 kg of fermented and dried beans.
Under normal conditions, vines grow to a height of about
3 m in one-year time. When they reach this height, their
vigour to produce normal sized leaves is reduced and
the crop needs rejuvenation. This is done by lowering
the vines down to the ground level at least once a year.
Lowering is done during the months of August-September.
Before lowering, all the leaves in the basal portion
of the vines to a height of 15 cm are removed. Vine
is untied from bottom upwards and coiled up carefully
and laid flat on ground leaving 2.5 to 5 cm length of
top shoots. Soil is put over the portion kept in the
soil to about 5 cm thickness. Lowering is followed by
light irrigation and manuring.
During fermentation, the pulp or mucilage covering the
fresh beans is removed and characteristic chocolate flavour
is imparted to the final produce. The process is simple
but must be carried out properly in order to get beans
of good quality. Heat is produced by keeping the fresh
beans compactly and this heat must be conserved so that
chemical changes inside the bean can be completed.
The four methods of fermentation usually employed involve
the use of baskets, heaps, boxes and trays for filling
up the wet beans.
best method suitable for small quantities of beans is
the tray fermentation. Wooden trays, 10 cm deep with
slatted / split cane bottoms are divided into a number
of sections by means of wooden partitions that fit into
appropriate grooves at required distances. The capacity
of the tray can be adjusted depending upon the availability
of beans by keeping the wooden plank in the appropriate
grooves. A convenient tray can be 25 cm wide and 60
cm long. Wet beans are filled in the tray and levelled.
About 10 kg of wet beans may be required to load one
single tray of beans will not ferment properly and at
least four or five trays are needed for successful fermentation.
The trays are stacked one over the other in such a manner
that the cocoa filled portions are in a single row one
above the other. The top tray is covered with plantain
leaves. After 24 hours, a close fitting sack is put
to cover the stack to keep the beans warm. Mixing or
stirring of beans is not necessary and fermentation
gets completed in 4 to 5 days, whereas 6 to 7 days are
required for other methods of fermentation.
this method, bean lots ranging from 2-6 kg can be fermented
successfully. Mini baskets may be made of bamboo matting,
closely woven and should have a diameter of 20 cm and
height of 15 cm for a capacity of 2 kg. For slightly
larger lots, proportionately deeper baskets may be used
(e.g., for 6 kg, the depth may be about 40 cm). The
baskets are lined with one or two layers of torn banana
leaves to facilitate drainage of sweatings. Wet beans
are then filled, compacted and covered with banana leaves.
The baskets are placed on a raised platform to allow
the flow of drippings. After 24 hours, it is covered
with gunny-sack and applied weights (bricks). The beans
are to be taken out and stirred well 48 hours and 96
hours after the initial setting. Fermentation will be
completed in six days and the beans can be taken for
drying on the seventh day.
number of factors influence the duration of fermentation.
Weather changes and season are important through their
influence on temperature and atmospheric moisture. Ripening
also affects fermentation. Beans from unripe pods cannot
be fermented. Beans of Criollo ferment more quickly
than those of Forastero. During the early stages of
fermentation, heat is produced by the action of anaerobic
microorganisms. The beans are killed by the combined
effect of heat and acetic acid and the cocoa aroma and
flavour potential are developed.
the end point of fermentation
Well-fermented beans will be plumpy and filled with
a reddish brown exudate. The testa becomes loosened
from the cotyledons. When cut open, the cotyledons will
have a bleached appearance in the centre with a brownish
ring in the periphery. When above 50% of beans in a
lot show the above signs, it can be considered as properly
On completion of fermentation, beans are dried either
in the sun or by artificial means. Sun drying can be
done in thin layers 2-3 cm deep and stirring from time
to time. Under normal sunny weather, drying can be completed
in four to five days. While drying in mechanical driers,
care must be taken to avoid exposure of the beans to
smoke, fumes etc. The most common method of determining
bean dryness is to take a sample and compress this in
the palm of the hand and listen for the characteristic
sound, which is associated with correctly dried cocoa.
The more scientific method is to use a moisture meter.
The dried beans with moisture content of 6-8% may be
packed in polythene bags or polythene lined gunny bags.
Some special conditions have to be provided in storage
in order to maintain the quality of the cured beans.
Properly dried beans can be kept in 200-300 gauge polythene
covers if only small quantities are involved or in polythene
lined gunny bags in the case of larger stocks. Beans
should be cleaned of flat, broken and other defective
beans before storing. The store should be sufficiently
ventilated and the bags should be kept on a wooden platform
with air space of about 15-20 cm below the wooden planks
set over the floor. The humidity should not exceed 80%
so as to prevent mould development and pest incidence
in the beans. Before storing cocoa, the store can be
made clean and insect free by application of pesticides
well in advance, but pesticides should neither be applied
nor be kept with the beans inside the store. As cocoa
beans can absorb and retain permanently any odour from
its surroundings, other food-stuffs should not be kept
with cocoa. So also, smoke or kerosene fumes should
be prevented from entry.