Cacao Origins

Since 2009 we continue to source some of the best origin-specific cacao in Venezuela. Our operations are in the field, on the ground in the different farming communities of Venezuela, and from one of our two processing facilities outside Caracas. Our sales office is in the San Francisco Bay Area and our bonded cacao warehouses are in California and New York.

Our team includes buyers who visit their regions monthly, stay updated to the harvest and maintain relationships with the farmer producers or community co-ops through ag education, fair trade and co-investments. Our warehouses are staffed with teams that receive cacao, process it for defects, and prepare shipments for export to North America or directly to customers in Europe and Asia. Our in-country presence allows us to provide an integrated delivery service for delivering beans from source to our customers’ facility or workshop.

Origin-specific regions of fine flavor aroma cacao we represent include but are not limited to:

Sur del lago map

Maracaibo and Sur del Lago, meaning south lake, have been farming criollo cacao since the late 16th Century.

Grown at the end of the Andean Mountain range it is inherently hearty with a full body. Its complexity is fairly minimal and can display wonderful flavors of red fruits, cream, and nuts.

Carenero map

Carenero refers to the port from which the cacao was once shipped and “Superior” is a reference to higher quality Trinitario beans.

Typically, Carenero has a strong underlying chocolate presence that hides underneath a myriad of flavors, such as spice, caramel, citrus, vanilla, berries, and honey.

A light acidity also adds further depth to the profile. Historically known as Caracas cacao.

Rio Caribe map

This Forastero cacao bean grown near the Rio Caribe has a slightly dark tone and a refreshing bitterness.

Venezuela´s largest growing region – the majority of this region produces an F2 cacao (less than 60% fermentation) and small plantation specific F1 (greater than 60% fermentation)

guaniamo and amazonas

Cacao grown deep in The Amazonian river basins of Venezuela thought to be the birthplace of cacao. wild cacao harvested by local Piaroa Indigenous communities. It is a two-day canoe trip or one day 4×4 expedition to bring this varietal from the Amazonian basin to the nearest roads for us to then drive another 10 hours to our warehouse.

Patanemo map

Patanemo is a village formed by runaway slaves on the foothills where the tropical mountains of South America crash into the Caribbean Sea. The name comes from the Spanish “paz tenemos” (we have peace).

Tisano´s founders were the first to introduce this as a terroir specific origin in 2010 and we continue to source directly from three farming families who ensure our stringent harvest. fermenting and drying practices are met.

trincheras map


Trincheras, know best for the healing thermal waters that run out from under the town. It was once a large cacao hacienda, today the dilapidated 17th Century Plantation sits in front of the farmer-run co-op.

Trincheras is situated high in the rainforest hills, 10 miles from the ocean, delivering a cacao with uniform dark chocolate astringency and subtle herbal bouquet with undertones.

Mantuano map

One of the original Cacao Growing Regions in the by-gone era of the “Gran Cacaos”.

The village of Mantuano is named after the local nickname for Spanish Dons and Lords of Colonial times – The Mantuanos.

It is a narrow valley between steep tropical hills that produces a spicy and chocolaty flavor.

Mantuano is a female-run cacao co-operative founded with the support of Tisano.

They do all the local buying in pulp to ensure fermenting and drying are standardized.

Chuao map

Chuao is one of the most prized cocoa origins amongst chocolate makers, so much so that over 4 times as much “Chuao” chocolates are sold than cacao is grown in this terroir each year.

Chuao has no roads leading out of town it is so isolated that the cacao beans must be brought out on small boats 900 kgs at a time. The isolation has meant that forgotten traditions remain very much alive in Chuao, such as their community harvesting and three-tiered drying patio process.

ocumare map

The town of Ocumare actually grows no cacao.

The name comes from a farmer-run co-op which purchased the beans from surrounding villages such as Cumboto, Cata, and Cuyagua. This allowed for a uniformed fermenting and drying process which enhanced the flavor.

Since 2010 the co-op was displaced and Tisano has been working with farmer co-op partners to continue purchasing and combine fermenting and drying for the region.

Puerto Cabello Map


A favorite growing region for the Spanish Crown, once the largest producer and named after the port of embarkation, Puerto Cabello. Now abandoned haciendas offer bountiful untamed cacao hidden in the tropical mountains.

This region offers the most diverse flavor profiles; from famed Chuao to Ocumare to the subtle Patanemo criollo, spicy Mantuano and molasses Trincheras.

Each village is surrounded by a unique micro-climate and terroir creating unique origins.


For details about fine flavor Venezuelan Origins please write to info@tisano.com attention of Jhoana Verhook.



Commitment with our farmers

We take great pride in being hands-on and directly involved with every step of the process of harvesting our cacao beans from cooperating with the farmers, importing the beans, and processing and packaging. In most of the communities we know the farmers by name, and with them are committed to sustainable farming as well as sustainable living.

Seeing first-hand how hard the farmers work to support their families, we wanted to do everything we could to make sure the farmers were treated fairly and rewarded for their hard work. We firmly believe that the more profitable and fairly treated the farmers are, the better quality cacao they can grow and deliver.

In addition to supporting farming co-operatives with above fair trade prices we also give back to the farming communities themselves with material support, tools, training, and equipment.

We are firmly committed to bringing the best Venezuelan cacao to chocolate makers around the world so they can bring the best chocolates to people everywhere.









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