Direct Trade 

Why do we use direct trade?

Small cocoa farmers are underpaid and impoverished.

60% of the world’s cocoa comes from two countries in West Africa. The government there creates a fixed price for cacao that is too low for the farmers. These prices force the farmers to live in poverty and more often than not leads to child labour and slavery. This is something we cannot stand for, thus we moved to a direct trade supply chain, which enables us to pay well above world market prices. 

Demand for cocoa is growing, but farmer income isn't.

There are millions of farmers who produce cocoa, in the middle there are a few multinationals and at the other end there are billions of consumers who enjoy chocolate. The bit in the middle, that's where it goes wrong. Big chocolate companies want to keep the price they pay the farmers inhumanely low. By cutting out these middle men, and by paying higher prices, we ensure our farmers a higher quality of life leading allowing them to run their farms ethically and responsibly.   

Reliance on Fair Trade labels is simply not working.

A handful of international cocoa traders and processors purchase the cocoa beans. They are then all gathered in one pile (both certified and non-certified) because it would be "impossible" to separate the two. On its own, a certification label does not enable farmers to live above the poverty line and provide a decent income for their families. The way we see it, chocolate makers are responsible for their chocolate and their supply chain – not the certification inspector. 

Meet Our Farmers

We pride ourselves in not only knowing exactly where and how we get our cacao, but also the passionate farmers who grow it!

Henry Haslam and Johanna Teran 


Their farm has been in his family for many generations. From early 1980’s through late 1990’s the government seized control and ruined all their crops. Now, after regaining control of their land, it is one of the two largest farms we work with and can deliver 20-30 sacks of wet cocoa every two weeks.

Boanerges Gutierrez

Rancho Grande, Nicaragua

10 years ago, Boanerges and his family moved to Rancho Grande from the Tomatoya region of Matagalpa. In Tomatoya, he was used to farming beans and corn, but as the rain became lesser and more sporadic, it was too difficult to continue. Rancho Grande is much rainier, so he "escaped" the weather limitations, making him a climate refugee.


La Dali, Nicaragua

Holman and Isai are our "Cacao Magicians". They don't farm our cacao but they ferment and dry it to perfection! They have developed respectful relationships with local cacao growers by offering higher than world market prices, assisting in making cacao a primary product on their farms, and teaching tree management