9 May 2010
Love of chocolate began well over 3,000 years ago in the southern Americas. Archaeologists credit the ancient Olmecs with the domestication of the cacao tree (it is ‘cacao’ when referencing the tree or bean, and ‘cocoa’ when used for the powder after beans have been processed), which most likely originated in the Amazon basin. Their processing of cacao beans into cocoa and chocolate was passed on to the Mayan and Aztec who called cacao “food of the gods.” The Aztec prepared a beverage from chocolate called xocatyl, meaning bitter water. Usually served unheated, the drink often contained ingredients such as honey, vanilla, flower petals, spices, chili peppers, and even maize. The Aztec ruler, Montezuma, said of xocatyl, “The divine drink, which builds up resistance and fights fatigue. A cup of this precious drink permits a man to walk for a whole day without food.” Europeans apparently agreed and gave the cacao tree the Latin name Theobroma cacao meaning food of the gods.
Food with such universal appeal and the allure of chocolate is rare. This much-indulged food is reached for to comfort us, or share as an expression of friendship and love. Chocolate energizes and stimulates the body and mind, while at the same time creating a sense of confidence, cheerfulness, and well-being. It contains more than 400 natural phytochemicals, flavonoids, and antioxidants, including anadamide, phenylethylamine, and theobromine. These elevate chemicals in the brain associated with pleasure and increase the activity of neuro-transmitters. Dark cocoa powder is the richest in valuable components, and provides the greatest amount of cocoa's sought after benefit.
Cacao trees require long-term and constant attention. Harvesting and processing is time consuming and elaborate. Volatile ‘market’ prices and opportunistic middlemen tend to keep small farmers in poverty. The cocoa powder in chocolate EDENSOY is produced in a fair trade socially responsible manner, ensuring that farmers receive fair wages and safe working conditions.
The cocoa in chocolate EDENSOY is not just any cocoa. It is Eden selected and the finest, organically grown on family plots in the Dominican Republic. After harvest and much involved processing, including fermentation, the organic beans are dried and shipped to Holland where they are finely milled into the delicious and healthful dark cocoa powder that we use to make chocolate EDENSOY. All of this is done without the harsh alkali processing that commercial cocoa goes through. Like all EDENSOY, chocolate EDENSOY is made with only whole, USA family farm soybeans, and gentle unrefined sweeteners. EDENSOY is the only soymilk made in the USA that is properly prepared to nurture human beings. EDENSOY is also the first and only soymilk in North America to be verified compliant with the Non-GMO Project Standards for avoiding GMOs.
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