Before my travel I had the idea to look for several development projects in Latin America along my way, visit them and attract attention for this kind of help. Projects, which really help the people in a sustainable matter, improving the life of people in difficult life situations.
Last week I visited a cultivation of Cacao in the secondary jungle around Tena in Ecuador, which is under the roof of Kallari.
Kallari chocolate is a local association, which started in 1997 and helps the local farmers to sell their product and give advices how to improve their cultivation.
With over 850 member families Kallari is an important stabilizer in this area. They support the life in the whole area in different manners and also families, which aren’t members receive their support.
The Cacao plants itself are part of a big eco-system of the jungle. Together with 80 other types of plants they crow under natural conditions. Due to the high diversity the soil provides all important nutrients in contrast to mono cultures.
We walked trough the forest and got a interesting introduction of all the plants, their use and some important details about crowing Cacao plants. The first time in my life I tasted the fruit pulp of a Cacao and got to learn the different taste of the red and yellow Cacao fruit.
We also had a look at the drying process and the place where Cacao beans got packed to be manufactured further. The chocolate itself is produced in other cities like Quito, but the plan of Kallari is to built a hall near Tena, which includes all the machines to fabricate the chocolate on their own.
Furthermore they also sell other products like Vanilla and hand-made art.
In contrast to industrial chocolate with Cacao from mono cultures, I can highly recommend this chocolate. With your purchase you support the idea of ecological cultivation and on top you increase the conditions of living in the area around Tena.
You will find their chocolate in some biological supermarkets or small organic shops.
The main office of Kallari
The entrance to the fermentation center
Drying Cacao beans
The first few steps in the fermentation process
The secondary jungle, where the Cacao plants grow