My first introduction to the world of chocolate in Lima could not have been better! after getting to know my new colleagues, Vilsic and Lourdes while having a delicious fruit lunch (the trick to keep off the kilos), we went to do a chocolate tasting at Giovanna Maggiolo’s chocolate shop in Miraflores called Xocolatl.
Giovanna Maggiolo is one of Lima’s finest chocolatiers, and uses the most exquisite ingredients from the Peruvian rainforest to create her savorous chocolate ganaches.
My second day was spent at the International Fairtrade Forum where we listened to the successes of fair trade in Peru. While Europe is struggling with the recession, it seems that Peruvian export is booming (I think I might move here). In the last year Peruvian export increased by 30%. As I listened attentively to the successes of fairtrade on the cultivation of Peru’s local produces, I could not help thinking how lucky I am to be here and to have been so warmly welcomed and integrated by my new colleagues.
Izaac Zuniga, the director of the cocoa cooperative Naranjillo and Jose Lecarnaque who manages the banana cooperatives CEPIBO explained the positive impact that fairtrade has had for the local farmers. Sales of organic and fairtrade produce are booming, and most importantly the local farmers get to see the fruits of the profits. I am really looking forward to seeing how the cooperatives are run and managed when I go up North to the region of San Martin to work with the local cooperatives.
Listening attentively to the Peruvian powerpoint slides!