It takes place at the exact moment that the pods mature. Late harvesting results in rotten pods and bean germination. Early harvesting reduces yield…
It takes place a the exact moment that the pods mature. Late harvesting results in rotten pods and bean germination. Early harvesting reduces yield (excessive purple or slaty beans). Maturity is appreciated: the color of the pods (green turns yellow, red turns orange), the sound the product makes when you hit it with your finger (for very dark pods and where color changes, the pods are hard and insensitive).
There are generally two major harvest periods in the countries that produce chocolate. The pods are then harvested at regular intervals of 10 to 15 days, and a maximum of 3 weeks.
We use: a sharp knife or machete for accessible pods and a special tool, with very sharp edges, fitted on a long pole for the highest places. The following is important: do not hurt the tree; hurting it could open a gap to parasitic fungi. Also, do not damage the fruit bearing areas that will produce the crops in coming harvest seasons. At the yield level, a skilful picker collects an average of 1500 pods per day. In case of a trees’ illness, the harvest is more frequent. All pods are picked, but among them only ripe pods, whose beans are not affected, are mixed in with the normal harvest. The others are eliminated.