Effect of fermentation container and thickness of bean mass during fermentation process of cocoa bean (Theobroma cocoa L)

E. Indarti, H. P. Widayat, N. Zuhri


Fermentation is used mainly to free the beans from the pulp, preventing growth, improving appearance, and facilitating subsequent process. Nowadays, fermentation becomes one of the important steps for better quality and taste of chocolatte. Fermentation methods may vary from country to country. Indonesian farmers mostly use wooden container instead of stacking the beans on the ground. Due to the simplycity and practical important to the farmers in improving quality of cocoa beans, available containers which are easy to be found around the village is used. The containers choosen in this reasearch are wooden box, rattan bucket and plastic bucket. The percentage of fermented beans and their mass temperatures are affected by the thickness of bean mass. Therefore, it is necessary for adjusting the thickness of beans which are placed in different containers and different size. The aim of this research is to improve the quality of fermented cocoa beans by selecting appropriate type of fermenting containers, size, and their optimal thickness of the bean mass.  The variable of these research are containers (wooden box, palstic bucket, and rattan bucket) and bean mass depth (30, 40 cm). During fermentation, changes in temperature, pH, and sugar content were recorded within 12 hours interval time. Analysis of dried fermented beans included water content, fat content, pH, cut test, and free fatty acids. Results shows that bean mass temperature highly  increased up to the third day and slowly decreased on the fourth and the fifth day. The highest temperature was 43.4oC occurred in beans placed in rattan bucket at  thickness of 40 cm. Unlike pH, during fermentation, the pH becomes extremely acidic occurred from intial day (5.45-5.85) to the third day (3.05-3.25), but on the fifth day the trend of pH value is increased. Sugar content shows that the initial sugar content average was 9.5% and then decreased to 3.4% on the first day. On the second day, the amount of sugar was below 2% and decreased to 0.3% on the fifth day. Among different containers wooden box shows highest fermented beans compared to other containers

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