03 September, 2012

Koko Samoa – Samoan cocoa drink

Courtesy of Real Pasifik, Food Culture of the South Pacific

In the Pacific region you can find some of the rarest Cocoa in the world.  Cocoa is said to have been introduced to Samoa in the 1800s.  The crop is a Criollo and Trinitario type cocoa, a fine or flavored variety and was first planted on German plantations in Samoa.  It’s so important to Samoa that the crop is been protected by law since 1961 and imports of any fresh cocoa product are banned.

Cocoa has become a common crop in Samoa and the drink made with it, koko samoa, is very popular and rivals the local beer, Vailima as the unofficial national drink.

It’s pretty simple to make, grind up the dried cocoa, add hot water and sugar and it’s done.  The brew we tried was straight off Repeka Meafou’s farm at at Faleasiu, on the main island of Upolu.  It was a surprise treat and offered up with typical warm Samoan hospitality before we began filming on the farm.

Repeka’s farm is part of the Women in Business network (WIBDI) which means organic and top quality.  The cocoa is grown sustainability alongside other crops.