Kallari Sacha Bars and Cacao Farmer Felipe

Felipe and Becca with Kallari Chocoalte at Chocolopolis Happy Hour

Meet Felipe and Becca from Kallari Chocolate.
At a recent Chocolopolis happy hour in Seattle I had the opportunity to meet Becca, who works for Kallari Chocolate and Felipe Grefa a cacao farmer from Ecuador that participates in the Kallari Cooperative.

Becca travels the western US educating people about Kallari Chocolate.  Their story is unique, uplifting, and about creating a sustainable income for the Kichwa people who grow cacao and at the same time save the environment where they live.  Read more on their web site www.kallari.com (but wait…click later, when you are done reading this post).


If you have a chance to meet Becca there will most certainly be chocolate samples and education involved.  She spouts information about cacao, such as why it varies in flavor (cacao can pick up flavors of the other fruits that are grown along beside it), or talks about how fresh Kallari chocolate is because it is made so close to the source instead of the beans being shipped across the world.  All the while she smiles while she encourages you to try another sample of Kallari's Sacha line.
She tells the story of the beautiful packaging designed by a volunteer, weaves in how important this chocolate is to creating a sustainable income for the Kichwa people and again offers more chocolate saying "try this one with the salt and ginger".



Felipe is from Ecuador of the Kichwa people who grow the cacao that eventually becomes a Kallari chocolate bar.  He is here for a short time touring, promoting, and educating with Becca.

My favorite part of the evening was the answer that Felipe gave to my question "What is your favorite part of the chocolate growing process?”.  He said "I like to work because work makes you strong. Chocolate is good for health, it cures many illnesses and keeps people healthy". 

He made these statements with so much enthusiasm and conviction, pounding his fist on his chest as if he was showing how strong and healthy he is.  We need more role models like Felipe who inspire us to work hard, to be strong and healthy. 

Hugo, Sadie, Felipe, Becca
While we were talking, Hugo Lucitante, a gentleman originally from the same area of Ecuador (the Cofan tribe) stopped by with his wife Sadie.   Hugo lives in Seattle now.  The really interesting part of this "small world" story is that although Hugo had never met Felipe before, his parents who still live in Ecuador had met Felipe many, many miles away in the rain forest of Ecuador.

I was able to catch a short video of Hugo interpreting while I asked a Felipe a couple of questions.




Thanks to Becca and Felipe for answering all of my questions, Chocolopolis for letting me hang out all evening, and to Hugo for interpreting.

Kallari
Chocolopolis

P.S.
Hugo is working on an important documentary.  Oil & Water is a shocking and inspiring David & Goliath story about the survival of his Amazonian tribe in Ecuador and efforts to revolutionize the oil industry.  More info here.

Next post...I'll be tasting all five of the different Kallari Sacha chocolate bars.

1 comment:

  1. Barbie... what a wonderful short documentary! My mouth is watering over the chocolate photo's! Great video interview with Felipe and Hugo translating. I'd love to meet them both. Well done!

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