Chocolate can save the world, or at least part of it.The following story is a testament to that fact. Brazil is facing record unemployment and environmental crisis from deforestation. Brazilians are fighting back with with chocolate! The Aprapixi Nature Preserve is an exceptional example of a successful business venture that improves quality of life and the environment at the same time. The gift of chocolate is truly a divine resource that benefits the world in endless dimensions. Do visit the source site for details on this fascinating story.
“Brazilian grandmother Maria Nobre de Oliveira thinks high-end chocolate will help end the epidemic of deforestation ravaging Amazon communities like hers. Her community of a few dozen residents live in hand-built wooden houses with no electricity or running water in the world’s largest rainforest, more than six hours by river boat from the nearest town in Brazil’s southwestern Amazonas State. Residents in isolated Amazon settlements say they have few opportunities to make a living other than clearing land to raise cattle – part of the reason why Amazon deforestation rates in Brazil shot up 29 percent last year after years of decline. But residents of the reserve have new ally to help them protect the trees – chocolate.
“This is virgin forest,” Oliveira, 62, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation as residents used long poles to knock cocoa beans – the base ingredient for chocolate – from the reserve’s trees. “Some guys came to cut the trees down a while back – but we told them to get lost,” “If we had let them, we wouldn’t have an income source… cocoa helps us protect the forest.” Farmers in the nature reserve work with a local cooperative in Boca do Acre that manages the sale and export of the cocoa. Every minute, forests larger than two football fields are felled in the Amazon, according to the former director of Brazil’s forestry service.Brazilian officials say projects like the cocoa co-op are helping residents make a living from the land while moving away from deforestation.”
Source: C.Arsenault and K.Mendes (Thomson Reuters Foundation) High-end chocolate thrives with forest