While first cultivated in Ecuador over 5.000 years ago, the cocoa bean became the country's first export product from around 1830.
The abbreviation "ASSS" stands for "Arriba superior summer selected" and includes those cocoa beans that meet a certain level of quality parameters, such as the degree of fermentation or the number of defective beans (see table).
"Arriba" refers to the region where the cocoa beans are grown, upstream of the Guaya River.
The main harvest season is from March to June, while the intermediate harvest season is from October to February.
|Weight per 100 beans (in gr.)||130-135|
|Degree of fermentation||75%|
|1||just a trace, may not be found again|
|2||present in the sample|
|3–5||clearly characterizing the sample|
|9–10||maximum, you experienced in the sample|