Monday, April 16, 2007

Not Just A Bar of Chocolate

"In 1994, organic chocolate manufacturer Green & Black's added Maya Gold to its line of chocolates after founders Craig Sams and Jo Fairley fell in love with a Mayan drink while on vacation in Belize. "Kukuh," the Mayan drink, had been consumed by native cocoa farmers for generations. The company had already begun with the belief that sourcing organic ingredients for its products would be beneficial to taste. The company also believed that farmers who grew their crops organically were more interested in the quality and taste of what they grew, and were therefore more personally invested in their crops.

..The Maya Gold Project officially started in 2003 with the aim of turning the Toledo Cocoa Growers Association into a viable, self-sustaining organization. This group operates in the poorest part of Belize and the program aims to help people in the local community improve their quality of life.

To achieve this, the organization must sell at least 200 tons of fair trade cocoa per year. Green & Black's has committed to buying at least that amount for their Maya Gold and other organic chocolate bars. Thanks to their commitment, there is now a palpable feeling of excitement and enthusiasm over the project and cocoa as a crop."

Read the article.