West Papua is blanketed in one of the largest untouched tropical rainforests in the world. The dense lowland rainforests are habitat to such endemic bird species as the magnificent Birds of Paradise, the peculiar Cassowary and the Victoria Crowned Dove–all considered sacred by the local indigenous tribes. The region’s economy is ‘for the taking’: mining, illegal logging, and land clearing for palm oil production threaten the rainforest. Fortunately, the forest is owned and managed by local indigenous tribes, and the timing is right to create a sustainable economic prototype in balance with rainforests and local traditions.
A world’s chocolate premiere: Papua Kerafa
The Kerafat cacao – the result of a natural crossing of Criollo and Forastero trees – became very rare due to the many problems it had to face over time: Nearly displaced by hybrids and reduced by diseases, floods and wild animals, only a few trees of this cacao are left today. In 2014, Original Beans launched the world’s chocolate premiere of this rare bean: Original Beans Papua Kerafat 68%.
After the rediscovery of the Kerafat, we started raising seedlings of the strong and flavor-rich Papua Kerafat cacao trees in 3 cacao nurseries, which we are planting alongside fruit and forest trees in biodiverse cacao-forests, a buffer zone for the primary forest that provides living and courtship grounds for endangered bird species. The project area has been defined as a 20x50km stretch of forest with several communities, each of about 100 inhabitants, all indigenous people of Papua. West Papua is an ongoing Original Beans origin and project.
On the ground, we:
Establish cocoa fermentation, drying and quality control centers
Establish nurseries to raise genetically unique and strong cacao varietals
Establish 2 demonstration cacao-forest plots with local cacao varietals growing under valuable and beneficial forest trees
Support the preservation and rejuvenation of old-growth cacao-forests
Support indigenous communities by preserving a minimum of 15.000 ha of primary rainforest
Train indigenous communities in organic cacao farming and agroforestry, post-harvest practices and quality control
Promote cacao-agroforestry as an alternative to traditional environmentally destructive slash-&-burn farming techniques
Help farmers achieve organic certification
Support indigenous farmer cooperatives in the management of economically viable cacao enterprises
“we started raising seedlings of the strong and flavor-rich Papua Kerafat cacao trees in 3 cacao nurseries”
Cacao farmer Papua
Elegant Dark Chocolate
Presence of pear and dried fruit add a chapter to the history of this “Dutch” cacao we rediscovered in Indonesia. Its flavours are as elegant as the birds of paradise in the surrounding rainforests.
Gluten Free, Vegan
Conserve Cacaos, Help Farmers, Preserve Cultures, Protect Animals, Save Rainforests
Cacao mass 59.56%(Indonesia), Raw cane sugar* 30.45% (Paraguay), Cacao butter* 9.99% (Dom.Rep.)
*Certified Organic. Gluten-free. Vegan. GMO-free
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