Archaeological Evidences of Cocoa in the Upper Amazon and its Historical Importance. Jaén Archeology and Tourism, Quirino Olivera 2018. Traditionally it was thought, that cocoa was native from Mexican lands, because it was there where it was revealed to the European conquerors. The importance of cocoa among the Mayans and Aztecs was far superior to gold, in fact it was used as a medium of exchange in commercial transactions and symbolically considered the food of the gods. Although it is true that cocoa left the Mesoamerican region to the rest of the world, its place of origin is not located in the isthmus of Mexico, if not in the Amazon. Genetic research started in the 2000s began to focus on the Amazon region, since it is there where the highest concentration of varieties of Theobroma occurs in wild and domesticated fruits. In recent years, more specific research has focused on the origin of domestication and dispersal of the national variety of Theobroma fine aroma, today emblematic in southern Ecuador and northern Peru (the Marañón-Chicnchipe binational basin).
Archaeological Evidence of Domestication and Consumption of Cocoa in Ancient Peru.