Most cacao farmers work outside the U.S. in countries like the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Brazil, Ghana, and Malaysia. But over the past 15 years, a few cacao orchards have been springing up in Hawaii, and experts say they are viable in Puerto Rico, too. Cacao farming is a labor-intensive process, and the cacao pods must be harvested individually because they do not all ripen at once. Yet for someone who's interested in chocolate, spending a few months at a "chocolate farm" could be an excellent career starter. The job brings people to the very beginnings of the chocolate-making process, and that can lead to opportunities elsewhere, veteran chocolatiers say.
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