✭ Message for 2023 ✭
A thought for you on this trip around the sun: it is our way of thanking you for your support, for choosing to believe in us and for welcoming Vaicacao into your life.
Thanks to you for drinking our cocoa in your ceremonies and rituals, and thanks to you for purchasing our chocolates and allowing yourself to be enveloped by their vibration and authenticity.
We are truly very grateful for your trust, and together with us, the people who cultivate all these precious cocoa with love and immense skill are grateful to you.
☆ When you choose Vaicacao you are contributing to a change of direction, where even those who produce cocoa can and must be placed at the same level as those who transform and market it. You are choosing delicate, meticulous, personalized artisanal processes to create precious products that can warm your soul and make your day that little more special.
☆ In 2015, when we began to create the foundations for our bridge project between El Salvador and Italy , or rather, Europe, we really intended to integrate the efforts of cultivation with wisdom, and those who transform and consume. By shortening this distance, we can be spokespersons for both realities: to offer you as much information as possible on how we do things, to allow you to make even more informed choices.
☆ We have therefore also chosen to create our products from cocoa beans ourselves , because we want to ensure that everything is done with the utmost care.
☆ We then like to bring a bit of Mesoamerican culture to your attention, a bit of knowledge, because we feel that there is a lot to tell , and that unfortunately there is a lot of false or imprecise information out there, both historical and technical.
☆ We have always thought that there is no sustainability, be it environmental or social, if we are not able to try a little harder and make it happen . This is a rule that we apply in general in our lives and in our everyday choices, especially in this era of strong climate and social changes.
☆ For us, however, the meaning of “fair or fair price” remains limited.
☆ Who decides what is fair and equitable in cocoa? Until now, it has been the multinationals and large companies in the sector who have decided the infamous "right price" together with the complicity of some international profit-making organizations. In our opinion, it is now used somewhat haphazardly, with reduced or limited impacts in the countries of origin. What does the word "ethical" mean, if in recent decades the conditions of those who cultivate have not improved, but on the contrary, there has been a progressive impoverishment of living and working conditions in the majority of producing countries?
☆ In our opinion, this language which we can call " post-colonialist" , should also emerge from our common thought, a prejudice which is difficult to dismantle and which automatically triggers a thought of what is right and what is wrong, without any in-depth analysis or knowledge of the subject. We are often shocked by what we read around and by the simplification of things.
When have we ever heard of a fair price in wine, or in oil , in pistachio , or in preserves and various food specialties that we create here in Italy? We would like to help "decolonize" this approach to reality, because it makes those who work every day from morning to night to make it possible for us to have cocoa and chocolate in our lives feel inadequate and insignificant.
☆ We like to welcome the proposals of our partners in the countries of origin: they decide the price , because if their work is well paid, you can also live on cocoa if sold well. However, this is only a starting point for us too; there is a lot of work to do and our commitment is precisely to stay the course.
☆ These realities, which like us have decided to bet on the cultivation of fine cocoa , redeeming lost local genetics , together with history, culture and traditions, are the key to the future sustainability of fine cocoa .
☆ They are key against deforestation and against the impoverishment of rural areas and their communities. This is the real challenge for having cocoa and chocolate in the future . There is still a lot to do, and raising awareness is very important. Let's say that ours has almost become a kind of activism , to build an equal dialogue between the various realities.
☆ All the cacaotales (term to define a cocoa estate, or plantation) that form part of our project, starting with our Finca Cuyancùa, as well as Finca S. Fernando (Atehuàn), Hcda. La Carrera (Lenca) , Finca Parras Lempa (Tlaloc) , as regards El Salvador , Cooperativa Nahua, Upala (Costa Rica) and Fedecovera, Alta Verapàz (Guatemala ), were designed in agroforestry systems that allow greater capture of Co2, avoid soil erosion, retain humidity and above all, allow healthy coexistence between primary trees of the tropical forest and other species, creating an excellent environment for maintaining biodiversity, for growing healthy and lush trees.
We thank you very much again for reading this message of ours, for all the times you advertised us to your friends and relatives, and for deciding to place your trust in us.
We wish you an extraordinary 2023 , in health, harmony, peace and lots of serenity, in the company of our cocoa.
Elisa & Juan Ra