What is the difference between Cacao and Cocoa

It is not strange that the words cocoa and cocoa are often confused with each other. Both are very similar in their spelling and pronunciation, in addition to both having the same origin. This origin is a plant, the cocoa or cocoa tree. Currently, in Mexico, these two words are often used interchangeably to refer to the tree, its fruit and a couple of elaborations that can be made with the fruit. Although, this is not completely incorrect because a linguistic adaptation caused that instead of saying cocoa in Spanish, it was said cocoa; it is advisable to mark the currently known difference between both products.

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in Mesoamerica Cocao refers to the cocoa tree or its fruit. Of high Amazonian origin, it is believed that ancient pre-Hispanic civilizations took it with them to Mexico and Central America. The Olmecs were the first to domesticate this plant and use it, 3,500 years ago. At that time its name was “cacaoatl” . Upon the arrival of the Spaniards and due to an error or a phonetic-phonological adaptation, cocoa began to be called cocoa. On the other hand cocoa is what the conquerors and the new Mexicans called “cacahuatl” or cocoa. When the Spaniards arrived in Mexico, this name was adopted, which prevailed over the years. Because of this, it is the widespread confusion that exists today, at least in Mexico. It is worth mentioning that initially cocoa or cocoa was not used to make chocolate as we know it today, but rather a rather bitter drink.
Other meanings and uses Cacao is used to refer to the tree, its fruit and the seeds within this fruit. It is also the product of fermentation and drying of the same seeds. In this sense, it is the main component of the chocolate we consume today. Instead, cocoa is used as a synonym for chocolate (the sweet product we know today).
At the moment In today’s confectionery, cocoa is the result of grinding grains that bear the same name. No coloring, sweetener or flavoring is added. The product is pure, therefore healthy. In fact, cocoa, despite its bitter taste, is known to be rich in antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins. As for cocoa, this preparation is also the result of grinding cocoa beans. However, sugar, glucose and preservatives are added to this mixture and it is processed in such a way that the result is sweet. Cocoa is used in the preparation of cakes, rolls, cereals and powders to prepare chocolate-flavored drinks. Cocoa is not usually considered very healthy.

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