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One of typical features of cocoa production is that harvested wet beans need to be fermented. The fermenting and drying processes have large impacts to cocoa bean quality. In the world, the price difference between fermented and unfermented beans fluctuates from 200 to 600 USD/MT.


Cocoa production in Vietnam is mainly at small farmer households. It is ineffective if every farmer do fermentation by themselves since in order to do fermentation, farmers need to invest for facilities and likely, those facilities will not be fully utilized. Furthermore, if every farmer do fermentation by themselves, the quality of beans will not be consistent. This is extremely forbidden in chocolate manufacturing. All of chocolate manufacturers want to buy cocoa beans from a consistent quality source even if it is low quality.


In order to improve the cocoa bean quality in Vietnam and to produce a significant volume of commercial cocoa that is high and consistent about quality and quantity, the Cocoa Post Harvest Center of CNX has been operating since October 2011. The Center is equipped with modern fermentation facilities that include an artificial indirect heat dryer and a laboratory. Together with our partners, we are conducting experiments on cocoa fermentation in Central Highlands conditions. The objectives of these experiments is to find out different protocols of fermentation in various conditions in order to produce fermented cocoa beans with consistent quality, according to customers’ requirements.


Once the fermentation protocol with CNX client is founded, private fermentaries participating in the Cocoa Bean Quality Improvement Program will receive trainings and technical assistances from CNX. This activity is in order to help them to be able to successfully apply fermentation protocols to produce fermented beans that met quality requirements of CNX's client. CNX will regularly take samples from these fermentaries for testing at its laboratory. This activity will help the Center to determine if beans produced from a fermentary do not meet quality standards and to give immediate instructions to fix the problems. As reward, these satellite fermentaties will receive a part of premium from CNX’s client.

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