During cocoa (Theobroma cacao L.) processing, the accumulated cocoa shell can be used for bioconversion to obtain valuable compounds. Here, we evaluate the effect of solid-state fermentation of cacao flour with Penicillium roqueforti on secondary metabolite composition, phenol, carotenoid, anthocyanin, flavonol, and fatty acids contents, and antioxidant activity. We found that the total concentrations of anthocyanins and flavonols did not change significantly after fermentation and the phenolic compound and total carotenoid concentrations were higher. The fermentation process produced an increase in saponin concentration and antioxidant activity, as well as significant changes in the levels of oleic, linoleic, gamma-linolenic, and saturated fatty acids. Based on our findings, we propose that the reuse of food residues through solid state fermentation is viable and useful.
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