76% Dark chocolate block Madagascar
In the northwest of Madagascar, organic premium cacao grows in the buffer zone of a unique rainforest ecosystem. UCLS, founded in 2009, started a bean quality program to train its member farmers in organic agriculture, selection of planting materials, and improved post-harvesting techniques for fermentation and drying. This resulted in a substantial increase in bean quality and therefore the farmers’ livelihoods have improved substantially. The cacao grows in sustainable agroforestry systems, intercropped with mangoes, bananas, coffee, vanilla, etc. The picking is done manually, and the beans are then fermented 4 to 5 days in wooden boxes before being sun-dried.