Our chocolate is from Ecuador! We source our chocolate in a pretty unique way, similar to how many bean-to-bar chocolate makers in the United States are sourcing their chocolate, but not many bonbon or truffle makers do. We source heritage varietals of beans at far more than fair trade prices, based on value and fine flavor.
We pay based on quality and there is often just one person between us and our farmer cooperatives. By paying for quality, we help to increase the incentive for maintaining good cacao genetics, traditions, increasing the quality of production practices, etc. We also only source from companies that produce their product in the country of origin. This means that a larger part of the value of our product remains in the communities that need it most (the cocoa growing community, our community, and the manufacturing community) rather than with a chain of intermediaries and buffer agents.
The reason why many other people don't source in this way is because it’s difficult and it’s expensive. The reason why we do it this way is because it’s the right thing to do. For us, for our customers, and for the larger cocoa-cacao community as a whole. Check out our on-the-ground pioneers and close friends from Conexión Chocolate who are doing big things to change the chocolate value chain in Ecuador.