Where do cacao beans grow?

If you’re in the US, unless you move to Hawaii (not a bad idea!) it will be impossible to find truly local cacao or chocolate unless you’re extraordinarily committed to growing it yourself. Cacao beans grow in warm, tropical climates within 20 degrees of the equator. Cacao originated in the Amazon basin, though the top 5 cacao growing nations (highlighted in blue on the map above) in recent years are:

  1. Cote d’Ivoire, West Africa

  2. Ghana, West Africa

  3. Indonesia, Southeast Asia

  4. Nigeria, West Africa

  5. Cameroon, West Africa