Skip to Content

Philippines

From Big Family Business To Cacao Farmer & Beyond

It’s the 1950’s; your country is poor and in the throes of recovery from WWII— but in the south, there’s the promise of land. The Japanese occupied the Philippines for 3 years, and after they were forced out, the country was devastated. Many Filipinos chose agriculture as a way out of poverty, and the country …

Read More about From Big Family Business To Cacao Farmer & Beyond

Metro Manila Chocolate & Where To Find It

In researching chocolate shops in Manila, I re-started the process several times. I couldn’t seem to find any chocolate makers in Manila, or even get a good idea of where Manila begins & ends. It turns out that over the years, the metropolis region of Manila has become a sprawling region reminiscent of Seoul. And …

Read More about Metro Manila Chocolate & Where To Find It

What Is Tablea? All About Filipino Hot Chocolate (Sikwate)

I heard the word tablea— also spelled tableya— so many times over my first couple of weeks in the Philippines, back in early 2017. I even bought some honey tablea in Bohol a couple of years ago. Then again, when I went back in to research Philippine cacao culture, I really got interested: what IS …

Read More about What Is Tablea? All About Filipino Hot Chocolate (Sikwate)

Chocolate On The Road: The Philippines Part 2

“I almost give up… It’s very difficult, because you’re dealing with these farmers who have been in this practice for 40 years, 50 years. It’s really very difficult to change their mindset [overnight].” -Val Turtur, President of the Cacao Industry Development Association of Mindanao Inc. This is the continuation of the story of Philippine cacao …

Read More about Chocolate On The Road: The Philippines Part 2

5 Delicious Davao City Chocolate Destinations

The Davao City chocolate scene is quite developed, with nearly a dozen local chocolate makers using local cacao to make chocolate. More often than not, this cacao is from their own farm. Despite that, most of this chocolate is really hard to find throughout the city. In part this is due to Philippine cacao culture, …

Read More about 5 Delicious Davao City Chocolate Destinations

How Young People Are Reorienting Philippine Cacao

A commonly-quoted statistic is that the average age of a cacao farmer is 50 years old. That statistic comes from this 2014 article detailing studies done to determine the average age of cocoa farmers in West Africa. So while that number is not necessarily applicable to the rest of the world, globally, farmers are getting …

Read More about How Young People Are Reorienting Philippine Cacao

Chocolate On The Road: The Philippines Part 1

“I would have thought that since cacao came into Asia through the Philippines, through that connection with Mexico, that the Philippines would be in as position now to be one of the top-producing countries of cacao. But now… we just barely even touch 1%.” -Kenneth Reyes-Lao, Cacao Culture Farms The Philippines is a huge market …

Read More about Chocolate On The Road: The Philippines Part 1

Filipino Chocolate & Cacao Culture

People often remark that Filipinos and Mexicans have a lot in common, and this isn’t pure coincidence. From cuisine and Catholicism to a parallel colonial history, these shared traits extend to chocolate. Or rather, a lack thereof. For an audio version of this story, click here. Spanish Colonization of The Philippines The story of chocolate …

Read More about Filipino Chocolate & Cacao Culture

Chocolate On The Road: Tree To Bar (A Creation Story)

“When you already have a product, you now have a story to tell about how this product came to be & where it all started.” -Wit Holganza Most countries around the world have more than one small-batch chocolate maker. In fact, you can make chocolate anywhere you can find electricity to power the proper machinery. …

Read More about Chocolate On The Road: Tree To Bar (A Creation Story)