As with the rest of the Upper Amazon, rainforest occupies most of the Ucayali River valley. In fact, cacao is native to the Amazon Forest. Scientists believe that the Amazon River basin in Peru is one of the areas that cacao first grew.
The area around Pucallpa, Peru, historically was afflicted with unrest from drug trafficking and militant groups. Due to the efforts of USAID and Alianza Cacao, many farmers have abandoned coca production to grow coffee, oil palm, and cocoa. Ucayali River Cacao works with USAID and Alianza to purchase fine-flavor cacao from these farmers above market price.
Purchasing raw cacao from nearly 400 smallholder farms—many within 30 minutes of their facility—Ucayali River Cacao then handles the time-consuming and specialized functions of fermentation, drying, and sorting. This gives the farmers more money than when they did everything, and gives them time to take better care of their crop and improve their yields. It also produces more consistent, high-quality cocoa beans than if 400 growers did everything themselves. This is why they are one of the few cocoa bean suppliers we can trust in making our small batch chocolate bars.
Read more about Ucayali River Cacao on their webpage at ucayalirivercacao.wordpress.com.
Find our products made from Ucayali River Cacao’s beans here.