THE KALLARI ASSOCIATION
The Kallari Association is a self-governed coalition of Amazon artists and organic cocoa producers. Our cooperative began in 1997 with less than fifty families and has now grown to over 850 families. Kallari has created sustainable income so Kichwa people can fulfill our basic family needs without logging our rainforests or selling our land. Our export of handcrafts has inspired the Kichwa youth to learn and practice traditional harvesting, dying, weaving and carving techniques. Just ten years ago, middlemen kept profits for themselves and set low prices for cocoa beans. Today Kallari communities sell as a single unit, ourleaders travel to Europe and North America to negotiate prices for our harvest. We have recently taken empowerment a step further: Kallari produces and sells gourmet organic fairly traded dark chocolate bars.