References in periodicals archive ?
Cocoa harvesters use sharp, heavy machetes to cut pods from cacao trees, then to hack them open to get at the seeds.
The purpose of these trips was to find and collect wild cacao trees and attempt to establish them in a living germplasm bank in Tarapoto, Peru, Meinhardt says.
By making the results publicly available, scientists will have access to key learnings to advance plant science, while plant breeders and farmers around the world will be able to develop cacao trees that are more sustainable, and can better fend off the environmental assaults that inflict $700 to $800 million in damages to farmers' crops each year.
Scientists are collecting germplasm samples of cacao trees from all parts of the world that seem immune to disease and cross-pollinate them with other trees in the lab.
The Aztecs of Mexico believed that the gods provided the cacao tree and they made choclatl - "warm liquid" from its cocoa beans.
Before people started moving the cacao tree around, its range probably extended from upper Amazonia into Central America, perhaps as far north as Chiapas, the southernmost state of Mexico.
Dispersion and ethnobotany of the cacao tree and other amerindian crop plants, Journal of Applied Botany 73: 128-37.
The scientific name for the cacao tree is Theobroma.
Chocolate is produced from the beans of the tropical cacao tree.
MEXICO CITY -- For the past decade, Mexico's cocoa crop has been nearly decimated - largely by the spread of Moniliasis, also known as frosty pod rot, a disease that attacks the fruit of the cacao tree, causing its cocoa beans to become unusable.
The discovery hints that there was a lot more contact than we thought between the early people of Mexico, where the cacao tree grows and chocolate was first eaten, and the people of the present-day American Southwest.
They took beans from the cacao tree and made a drink, which they called xocoatl , believing it was a gift from the gods and imbued with special properties.