seed is brownish in colour.
“Cocoa” is thought to be a centuries-old misspelling of “cacao,” by English speaking traders. Both words are often used interchangeably nowadays, though "cocoa" tends to refer to the drink and "cacao" to the plant. Most likely the origin of the word "chocolate" is in the Nahuatl language of Central America which referred to the beans as "cachoatl." When it was classified by Linnaeus (clearly a chocoholic) the cacao genus was named Theobroma (food of the gods). Cultivation of cacao most likely started with the Mayans perhaps as early as 1500 BC. A little over 3,000 years later Hernan Cortez brought it to Europe where drinking chocolate did not catch on until sugar was added.
The ripe yellow-brown brown seed pods containing cacao beans look as though they’ve been attached to the trunks of these trees ("cauliflorous"). Today most commercial cacao beans are grown in East Africa on small farms and are harvested by hand as they have been for hundreds of years. Generally, harvesting is done during the rainy season but, since the plant has both flowers and fruits simultaneously, it can be harvested during most of the year.