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COCOA (Cacao): A STUDY OF CHOCOLATE
"Highly Recommended! This is one of those interesting documentaries that informs you about a topic you should know more about, but don't - chocolate. The filmmakers had to travel half way around the world in order to tell the whole story, and a fascinating one it is. The cinematography is excellent and the information is clear and objective; you get to see both sides of the supply and demand issue and like a great tasting chocolate bar you end up satisfied." National Media Review
Billions of people all over the world love chocolate. Roald Dahl's classic children's tale, "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," has been made into a feature film twice; still not many know much more about chocolate, other than they like it. The source of cocoa, chocolate, and cocoa butter is the cacao seed (or bean), which, after oil and coffee, is the third most traded raw material in the world. The seeds grow inside of large pods that sprout from the trunk or branches of an evergreen tree, called the Theobroma Cacao, native to the rainforests of Central and South America, then transplanted to western Africa. This program takes us to Ecuador, where some of the world's most refined cocoa is produced. We follow the tracks of the cacao bean on its journey from harvest to consumer by way of the Cailler-Nestlé Chocolate Factory in Broc, Switzerland. We learn there are over 14 million people involved in the plant's cultivation; also we meet growers, harvesters, brokers and exporters, such as Maquita and Nestlé, the world's leader in chocolate production, who share the complexities of producing and marketing chocolate, and why only 5% of the profits ever reach the producers.