During a recent training campaign organized for farmers in Mbalmayo, a suburb near Yaoundé, the National Cocoa and Coffee Board found that there are many methods still unknown or misunderstood by farmers.
When asked the best way to open cocoa pods to ensure the quality of the beans, most of them said: “all the pods must first be picked, even if it takes days or weeks, before being opened with machetes.” They say there are no special tricks and no time limits.
However, there is a trick and a time limit to ensure the best quality of beans. Oncc explained that the opening of cocoa pods must be done immediately after they are harvested and the best tool to use is a club.
“It is best to break them (the pods, ed) with a club and then extract the beans. To preserve the quality, the pods must be broken immediately or one day at the latest after picking to prevent the beans from being attacked by pests.”