Farmer-to-Farmer Cacao Sensory Analyst or Fermentation Expert

  • Tocache, Peru
  • Contract

Company Description

The National Cooperative Business Association CLUSA International (NCBA CLUSA) is the primary voice for people who use cooperative businesses to build a better world and a more inclusive economy. NCBA CLUSA provides cross-sector education, technical assistance, and advocacy that helps co-ops thrive. For over 100 years, NCBA CLUSA has sought to advance and protect cooperative enterprises, highlighting the impact that cooperatives have in bettering the lives of individuals and families. In the last 60 years, NCBA CLUSA has worked in over 85 countries in the areas of food security, agricultural development, strengthening of communities and farmer organizations, community-based health, natural resources management, and empowerment of smallholder farmers, women, and youth. We currently work in in Africa, Latin America, and Asia.

Job Description

NCBA CLUSA is currently seeking 1 qualified Farmer-to-Farmer volunteer candidate based in Peru for the position of Cacao Sensory Analyst or Cacao Fermentation Expert to support Cacao de Aroma based in Tocache, Peru.

Cacao de Aroma is a second-tier cooperative (comprised of 6 smaller cooperatives) founded in 2014.  They provide high quality cacao beans according to the standards of sustainable, organic and fair-trade agriculture (FLO).

Cacao bean flavors are expressed through fermentation, drying, toasting and conch. Flavor variety and consistency are characteristics that chocolatiers hold in high regard. Astringency is inherent to cacao beans tannins but is not cacao’s most attractive taste sensation. Therefore, chocolatiers control astringency through fermentation, drying, toast and conch.  Two of Cacao de Aroma’s members (Cordillera Azul and Paraiso) production presents high levels of astringency.

Cacao de Aroma would like an expert to review their fermentation process for CCN 51and suggest improvements to increase flavors and diminish astringency. They want to expand their exports through their cacao beans sensorial profile (flavor, quality and consistency). Furthermore, Cacao de Aroma would like to produce chocolate bars in the future and would like the advice from an expert to control astringency and not let it overpower the nut and banana flavor of their cacao beans.  

Duration: 2 weeks, May- August 2021



  • Assess the current fermentation methods of Cacao de Aroma’s CCN 51 and blend batches.
  • Working with Cacoa de Aroma representatives develop a strategy to improve cacao beans sensory characteristics, which include but is not limited to, reducing astringency of their production in Paraiso and Cordillera Azul located in Nuevo Progreso.
  • Improve post-harvest protocols for CCN and blend batches.


  • A degree in Botany, Agronomy and/or related field
  • Significant agriculture operation experience preferably in cacao processing. 
  • Knowledge in cacao industry quality standards, chemical and physiological changes of fermented and dried cacao beans 
  • Available for virtual communications with Host Organization, Staff and Co-volunteer
  • Advanced English language skills; reading, writing, speaking.

Additional Information

All application materials must be submitted in English.

Only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted. No phone calls, please.

NCBA CLUSA is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer with a commitment to diversity.  All individuals, regardless of personal characteristics, are encouraged to apply; all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, age, and legally protected characteristics for non-merit factors.