"Mark Rin" Cocoa Farm -story of unique cocoa bean from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Mark Rin is a farm, cocoa bean incubator of locally grown and sourced cocoa bean from Chiang Mai. With combination of academic knowledge and passion to spread cocoa culture to local community, cocoa tree cultivation is not only an agriculture. The project is also an output of study from Assoc.Prof.Dr.Sanh La-ongsri Ph.D.(Biology) of MaeJoe University. The developed bean is called I.M. 1 hybrid, which has been developed from two cocoa types; Forasterro and Criollo, to match the local condition of Chiang Mai.
Chiang Mai is a unique place for producing cocoa. It is located in the northern part of Thailand and is on average at 300 m (1,000 ft) elevation. The city is surrounded by the mountain ranges of the Thai highlands and has a tropical wet and dry climate, tempered by the low latitude and moderate elevation, with warm to hot weather year-round, though nighttime conditions during the dry season can be cool and are much lower than daytime highs.
Mark Rin farm is one of the earliest cocoa incubator in Thailand who closely works with cocoa trees and farmers. They nurse cocoa trees from seed until mature. With an average of 30-40 seeds per fruit, I.M. 1 hybrid cocoa usually required 3-4 years of care before its harvest. This type of bean also gives as high as 52% cocoa fat.
Quality control is strictly implemented before distributing to contracted farmers, whose are co-op members. Mark Rin believes that the structure of co-op and relationship building would support local community and ensure the sustainability of fair transaction.
To guarantee standard quality found in every batch, Mark Rin has their own fermentation process.
Post-harvest process from co-op farmers, Mark Rin will collect ripe cocoa beans and arrange fermentation and drying in their controlled stations. They have done an amount of extensive research and development in fermentation process to achieve the quality beans. In addition, its kind of fermentation process allows them to achieve a more preferable alkalization development.
Hygiene is also a focus at Mark Rin. Drying stations are quarantined from dust and insects. The floor is lifted, improved and zoned to allow a more manageable operation.
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