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  • Why is cacao powder not considered ceremonial
    The chocolate industry is not a regulated industry and when it comes to "ceremonial cacao" the standards are indigenous and passed down from generation to generation. Because there is no "official governing board" nor set of rules or standards that have been adopted by mainstream western society it does what it always does, whatever it wants to exploit and make $. 1. Planting: To be considered "ceremonial" the trees must be planted with the intention of producing ceremonial cacao. There are specific ceremonies that must be done when planting and continued offerings given to remain in good relationship. Most cacao powder is being produced from large commercialized plantings where none of this care is given. Commercial cacao production involves monoculture and so the cacao themselves are considered "orphans" for they are not integrated with their greater family therefore it can offer less connection. 2. Process: To make cocoa powder, chocolate liquor is pumped into giant hydraulic presses, where about half of the cocoa butter is squeezed out. Baking soda is added to the remaining material, which is called "press cake." The treated press cake is then cooled, pulverized, and sifted to form cocoa powder. The cocoa powder is then packaged for sale in grocery stores as hot-chocolate mix or sold in bulk for use as a flavoring by dairies, bakeries, and candy manufacturers. Ceremonial cacao does not undergo this process and is made from paste 3. Permission: We have seen a rise in so called ceremonial being sold without the permission or blessing of native elders to carry such name.
  • Why is your ceremonial cacao so rare
    Hawaii represents 1% of the global cacao production in the world and although introduced in the 1800s it was never really a tree that was seen as having commercial value at the time. Growing takes 3 plus years to bear a product so sugarcane and coffee were faster commodities. Of this 1% we represent a smaller portion of this Hawaii diaspora being the only indigenous makers that come from a cacao lineage that follow the old traditions of deep relationship. The cacao planted in our farm comes from beans that were blessed and brought to the islands representing some of the first initial plantings of cacao
  • When did cacao come to Hawai'i
    Cacao first came to Hawaii via Guatemala in the 1830s, according to the Hawaii Chocolate Association. The trees grew in David Kalakaua's gardens. In the 1850s, German physician and botanist William Hillebrand planted cacao in what is now Foster Botanical Garden in Honolulu.
  • Why is this ceremonial cacao so expensive
    On average Hawaiian beans and production cost 200%-300% more to grown and make due to higher land prices and cost of goods and labor.
  • Cacao Health Information
    Important Cacao and Health Information Please consult a doctor before taking -Heart Rate: Cacao will naturally raise your heart rate slightly. Please consume accordingly and mindfully. -Blood Pressure: Epidemiological studies suggest that cacao reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Flavanols found in cocoa have shown to support blood pressure reduction. -Antidepressants: If you are currently taking SSRI antidepressants and/or anti-psychotics, they might not be compatible with the MAOI's (Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors) in cacao. Depending on the dosage, consuming cacao might be ok, as always, if you're taking these types of meds please consult with your doctor. -Pregnant and nursing women: Please consult physician before taking -Other substances: Raw cacao contains both serotonin and tryptophan which have positive effects on our mood. Blood flow to the brain is also increased amplifying brain power. -Caffeine: The caffeine content of cacao varies widely amongst cacao plants and processing, this cacao has shown a very low, to no-caffeine feel. -Children: In moderation and of course smaller doses based on their weight is recommended for children. -Pets: Cacao should NOT be consumed by your pets as it can be deadly. Please keep out of reach from your beloved animals.
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Our ANCESTOR collection pays tribute to the wisdom of our plant ancestors. An exploration not of ingredients but of relationships we have grown with and in throughout over 80 collective plus years. 

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