Try the FairTrade difference when you bake with this Organic Baking Cocoa Powder from Equal Exchange! If you're used to the flavors of homemade chocolate baked goodness, and you usually use specific brands that are not from fairly or directly traded cocoa, it's time to taste the difference! When small farms and family farmers literally sink their hands in the earth, harvest and ferment the cacao beans, and even own the facility that manufactures the cocoa, you know that their incredible, personal investment HAS to be worth the effort.
Grown by the farmers of CONACADO, a cooperative in the Dominican Republic, the bold richness of this Organic Baking Cocoa is made with fairly traded cacao (cocoa beans) that are manufactured in farmer-owned facilities. By investing directly in these farmer-led initiatives, this cocoa takes baking to a whole new level. Supporting these small farmer co-ops means that they are able to stand up against corporate cocoa industries that are deforesting their land and enslaving their people.
"Today, CONACADO is made up of over 8,500 farmer members, and 70% of their cacao is sold as high quality fermented beans in niche markets, with 40% of it sold on the Fair Trade market. [...]
"In 2008, CONACADO made another bold move and purchased their own cocoa powder processing plant, taking a major part of production into their own hands. Now, rather than selling their beans to be processed by chocolate companies, the farmers are in control of producing their own semi-finished products.
“'It is rare in the chocolate world for farmers to own any part of the chocolate processing, so the fact that CONACADO owns the plant is a game changer,' said Dary Goodrich, Equal Exchange Chocolate Products Manager. 'In the conventional system, farmers are on their own selling to intermediaries who sell to huge multinational corporations, and a small handful of these corporations process the vast majority of the world’s cocoa beans into chocolate liquor, cocoa butter and cocoa powder. CONACADO is flying in the face of all this.'” [Source: Equal Exchange]
Equal Exchange Organic Baking Cocoa - 8oz
For more information about fairly traded chocolate and what it means for the farmers and all of us...
Cristina Liberati's job is to support farmers who are working to improve their crops and make their co-ops as stable as possible. She visits farmer cooperatives in Ecuador, Peru, Colombia and the Dominican Republic, coordinating projects funded by the US Agency for International Development. [Equal Exchange] talked with Cristina about what her routine is like on the day-to-day, how a co-op business can be kind of like a family, and how farmers can learn from each other!
Kibwezi, Kenya has long been known for its skilled carvers who transform fallen wood into functional works of art. Using only basic hand tools, this skill is passed from father to son and requires years of patient practice to master. Hand-carving was long considered a highly respected profession but has seen a slow decline in recent decades as younger generations move out of rural villages in search of urban jobs. [Source: Acacia Creations]