What’s the best thing, first thing in the morning on a grey, supposedly summer Friday morning? For me, it’s chocolate! Kallari Chocolate is a project of a self-goverened coalition of Amazon artists and organic cocoa producers called the Kallari Association, that creates sustainable income so families in the Kichwa community can fulfill their basic needs without logging the rainforests or selling their land.
Founded in 1997 with less than 50 families and grown now to include over 850 families, the group sells their harvest as a single unit and negotiates prices directly with purchasers from Europe and North America, avoiding middlemen that have historically set low prices for cocoa beans to reap greater profits for themselves.
The Kallari Association is considered leaps beyond standard Fair Trade practices because of the higher income levels for participating families which increase their standard of living, strengthen their cooperative, and develop the nation by offering a superior, fresh product that reaches markets within three months of harvest.
Besides their delicious chocolates, the association established a community-owned coffee shop, restaurant and handicraft gallery in 2004 that serves breakfast, lunch and cultural dinners – which along with traditional Amazon dishes offers a presentation on Kichwa language, culture and organic chocolate and coffee production.
As mentioned earlier, Kallari now also produces and sells its own gourmet, organic dark chocolate bars that can be found at Whole Foods Markets and online through Chocosphere.com.
Thank you Kallari Association for making our world wonderful.
LET ME KNOW, REPLY BELOW: What is your favourite brand of gourmet chocolate?