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What is 'raw' Cacao and how is Cacao powder different from Cacao?

In theory there is no such thing as raw cacao.

In the fermentation stage the beans often go above 58 degrees for over 4 days.

Also when extracting Cacao butter, the cacao paste has to be heated to at least 80 degrees in order for the butter to extract. There is no cold press available in cacao. The paste must be warm liquid and then heated further for the equipment to work.

However health properties are still optimal due to the low heat treatment and gentle care.

What is the difference between cacao and cocoa powder?

In essence there is no difference. The powder is the powder that comes from the bean. In the world of cacao and chocolate there are no rules or laws. Even Hershey in the US are calling their powder Cacao powder.

However, over the years when the word Cacao or raw cacao is used it generally means that the powder has been low heat treated to the minimum level required to extract the cacao butter and leave the powder.

Unfortunately like most industries once something becomes popular the authenticity is lost, commercialism comes in and short cuts are taken. The most powerful way is for you the consumer to buy from the most authentic source possible and even better make the products at home from the bean. It is even possible to make your own cacao butter.

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