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Bantu Chocolate: A New Brand with a Bold Vision for a Fair and Sustainable Cocoa Industry

Bantu Chocolate is a new bean-to-bar chocolate company that aims to change the broken system of the cocoa industry. Founded by Veronique Mbida, a Cameroonian-born entrepreneur who lives in the UK, Bantu Chocolate sources its cocoa beans from a family-owned farm in Cameroon, where the farmers are paid three times the fair trade wage. Bantu Chocolate also produces cacao pulp juice, a natural and nutritious drink made from the fruit of the cacao pod.

From Fashion to Farming: How Veronique Mbida Found Her Passion for Chocolate

Veronique Mbida was not always interested in chocolate. She had a successful career in fashion and design, working in France and Brazil. She was also a fan of a popular chocolate brand, until one day her boyfriend brought her a bar of her favorite chocolate and she realized how much sugar and additives it contained. She started researching the chocolate industry and was shocked by the exploitation, poverty, and environmental damage that plagued the cocoa farmers in West Africa, where more than 70% of the world’s cocoa is sourced.

She decided to join her mother, Catherine, who had started a family farm on their land in Cameroon in 2016. Catherine had planted 10,000 cacao trees in an agroforestry system that preserves biodiversity and soil health. Veronique saw an opportunity to create a new kind of chocolate company that would empower the farmers, respect the environment, and produce high-quality products.

New Brand with a Bold Vision for a Fair and Sustainable Cocoa Industry

Beyond Fair Trade: How Bantu Chocolate Pays Its Farmers Three Times More

Bantu Chocolate is not just a fair trade company. It goes beyond fair trade by paying its farmers three times more than the fair trade minimum price. This is based on the Anker living wage methodology, which calculates the income needed for a decent standard of living for a family of four in a given country. Bantu Chocolate also provides training, equipment, and support to its farmers, who are involved in every step of the production process, from harvesting to fermenting to drying.

Bantu Chocolate believes that paying its farmers well is not only ethical, but also beneficial for the quality of its products. By ensuring that the farmers are happy and motivated, they can produce better cocoa beans that have more flavor and aroma. Bantu Chocolate also uses only natural ingredients, such as organic cane sugar and cocoa butter, and does not add any emulsifiers, preservatives, or artificial flavors.

A Taste of Africa: How Bantu Chocolate Celebrates Its Origins and Culture

Bantu Chocolate is proud of its African roots and culture. The name Bantu means “people” in many African languages, and refers to a large group of ethnic groups that share linguistic and cultural traits. The logo of Bantu Chocolate features a stylized cacao pod with four seeds, representing the four core values of the company: quality, sustainability, fairness, and culture.

Bantu Chocolate also showcases its African heritage through its products. The chocolate bars are named after different regions of Cameroon, such as Limbe, Douala, Yaounde, and Noire. Each bar has a distinctive flavor profile that reflects the terroir and personality of its origin. The cacao pulp juice is another product that celebrates the diversity and richness of Africa. Cacao pulp juice is a traditional drink in many African countries, but it is rarely exported or commercialized. Bantu Chocolate aims to introduce this delicious and nutritious beverage to the world.

A New Brand with a Bold Vision: How Bantu Chocolate Is Changing a Broken System

Bantu Chocolate is not just another chocolate company. It is a brand with a bold vision for a fair and sustainable cocoa industry. By paying its farmers well, respecting the environment, producing high-quality products, and celebrating its culture, Bantu Chocolate is challenging the status quo and creating positive change. Bantu Chocolate is not only making chocolate that tastes good, but also does good.

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