A lot of our chocolates are blends of cocoa beans coming from different sources and different brokers.
We opt for ethical trade cacao and some of the certifying agencies that we look for when buying raw cacao or chocolate liquor are Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance, UTZ and Responsible Cocoa.
When we blend the cocoa beans together or the unsweetened chocolate liquors together to make our recipes, we can not call the chocolate entirely Fair Trade or Rainforest Alliance because it is a blend and the individual certifying agency looks for the chocolate to be exclusive of their particular agency as they have their own criteria in determining what is ethical trade.
The 4 agencies we feel are the best are Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance, UTZ and Responsible Cocoa. These are the ones we try to always opt for in purchasing cacao and cocoa supplies.
Certain countries in general ensure ethical trade cacao. Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil and Ghana do a great job in having ethical work and pay standards for cocoa farmers. If cacao or semi finished chocolate liquor comes from a government certified and sanctioned broker within these countries, you can be pretty sure it fits ethical trade criteria.