I source all ingredients from partners who share my beliefs in fair pay for producers and in sustainable agriculture.
Certifications like Fair Trade and Organic are helpful places to start, and I consider them mandatory when purchasing ingredients whose production stories are not readily available for review. However, I prefer to work with ingredients from small-scale producers whose stories are openly available. Many such producers lack formal certifications and yet meet--often, exceed--certification standards.
That's because they follow new business models that abandon the commodity system, focusing on quality over quantity and setting prices based on true production costs, including labor. I favor supporting this kind of de-commoditized cacao production, even if it means that sometimes (expensive) formal certifications aren't available. In place of certifications, suppliers in this kind of system typically offer transparent access to the stories and numbers behind cacao production in the origins they represent.
For more information about de-commoditized, quality-driven cacao supply chains, please consider visiting the websites of my cacao suppliers, including Uncommon Cacao, Meridian Cacao, and Chocolate Alchemy.
William Marx, owner & chocolate maker, winnowing cracked cacao beans.
Designed in-house, and locally printed and cut, my packaging emphasizes renewable resources and is entirely recyclable, including the inner plastic protective sleeve.
100% recycled and recyclable paper chocolate bar sleeves.
Caring about the planet and its people should not stop at the chocolate bar. From using sustainable shipping materials to striving for energy-efficient production techniques, I am on an ongoing quest to lighten my chocolate's footprint.