Moulinet Chocolat: The adventure

by Estela Duque in Reading

We did it
On 10th March 2016 we successfully raised £7,080 with 41 supporters in 56 days

Bring to the world Philippine organic cacao, chocolate couverture, and the tropical bounty supporting the sustainable cultivation of cacao.

by Estela Duque in Reading

This Crowdfunder campaign will fund two separate but intertwined entities:(1) Moulinet Chocolat – a UK-based company that will• Contribute to establishing the identity of Philippine cacao in the world market.• Help develop a market for high quality and organic Philippine cacao beans for the niche market of bean-to-bar chocolates.• Create an online platform: a website; single dot-com and subdomains in New Zealand, Australia, and North America; e-commerce hosting, and secure certification.

(2) Fine Chocolate Cooperative – the Philippine's first non-government forum that will• Explore ways of providing cacao workers cooperative education and improve the skills of Filipino chocolatiers.• Initiate a coordinated effort to introduce Philippine fine chocolate overseas, starting in 2016-17 with UK, Japan, New Zealand, and Australia.• Co-host a conference on the colonial history of cacao in the Philippines, approaching key cultural agencies in the Philippines as partners, such as Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional or Instituto Cervantes.

 

The cocoa value chainThe world’s producers of bulk chocolate and semi-finished cocoa products buy their beans from equatorial countries in South America, Carribean, Africa, and Southeast Asia including the Philippines. This cacao value chain consisting of international commodity trading, warehousing, and industrialised production, produces enormous but unevenly distributed profits where primary growers are at the mercy of wholesale buyers and cacao traders.

Principles of Sustainable farming and chocolate consumption• Environmental conservation - Create opportunities for farming cacao without destroying the environment for the benefit of future generations.• Social and inter-generational equity - Bypass cacao bean trading and procurement that reduce cacao prices to levels that make it difficult for primary producers to earn a living.• Community-building - Engender equity within the entire spectrum of chocolate production, from improving worker welfare through to promoting the fine chocolate industry.• Viable local economy - Help local economies by strengthening the link between cacao growers, chocolatiers, and consumers of fine chocolate.

 

The forest-like canopy and understory of Kablon Farm's multi-cropped organically farmed cacao estate (clockwise from top left): Figure A. Bird's nest; Figure B. Soursop (scientific name Annona muricata) trees; Figure C. Tree-like papaya plants; Figure D. Lanzones (scientific name Lansium parasiticum) trees laden with fruit; Figure E. Split cacao pod; Figure F. Coconut tree with identifying code.

 

  will bridge the gap separating cacao growers from fine chocolate consumers created by the conventional cacao value chain in three ways: by cutting out large warehousing operations and commodity trading; making chocolate production and profit distribution more transparent; and supporting the economy at the source, by distributing the tropical harvest that makes the sustainable cultivation of Theobroma cacao possible.

This campaign will feature the products of Kablon Farm in Figure G (above), a 65-hectare multi-crop organic estate in South Cotabato: fermented cacao beans, chocolate callets (100% chocolate), coconut sugar, and jams from plants and trees shading the cacao trees: coconut, mangosteen, guava, jackfruit, durian, passionfruit, etc. In 2015, Kablon Farm exported for the first time one (1) metric tonne of fermented beans to  Packint S.R.L., a chocolate and chocolate equipment manufacturing company in Italy. In 2016 the Crowdfunder aim is to duplicate this effort, but with organic certification and a more direct link to chocolatiers and the public. In the future, Moulinet Chocolat will work with other cacao farms and artisanal chocolatiers based in the Philippines.

The Rewards (clockwise from top left): Figure H. Fermented Trinitario cacao beans.  Figure J. Coconut sugar (available in 200g packets).  Figure K. Chilli peppers drying under the sun. Figure L. Seasonal jams and preserves in 265g bottles; Figure M. 100% Chocolate callets 30 pieces x 4g each in 120g packet. NOTE: All reward-based pledges will include a pack of chilli peppers-medium heat (50g) known in the Philippines as siling labuyo because the proceeds from its sale have always gone to Kablon Farm workers.

 

NEW REWARDS! All pledges will receive a set of BLANK postcards, shown above (enlarged captions for illustration only). They depict everyday life at the cacao estate and Barangay Tupi, South Cotabato, Philippines. They will be included in £50, £100, and £250 Pledges, whose fields can no longer be edited as they were the first to be taken up in the first week of launch.

 

Phases of Business Development1. Create a digital platform for the sale of the products of the multi-cropped cacao estate.2. The initial product range will consist of Kablon Farm products: fermented cacao, chocolate callets, coconut sugar, jams, and chilli peppers (Figures J-M above).3. The product range will later be widened to associated goods like Philippine fine chocolate and specialty coffees.

 

The Team - Two generations of the Eslao and the Pantua families from the Philippines, now scattered around the globe over three continents![N]  R.J. Eslao: Moulinet Chocolat Head of Chocolate & Accounts; Self-taught chocolatier (Manila, Philippines).[O]  Ernesto Pantua: Kablon Farms General Manager; Agricultural engineer; Cacao Growers Association Region 12-Education Committee Chair (South Cotabato, Philippines).[P]  Marga E. Testado: Moulinet Chocolat Head of Sugar & Jams; Advertising officer (Manila, Philippines).[Q]  Estela E. Duque: Moulinet Chocolat Founder; Architect & architectural historian; Chocolate taster; Social entrepreneur (Berkshire, UK).[R]  Alan E. Benton: Moulinet Chocolat IT & Communications adviser; MC3 Promotions Event Management, (Wellington, New Zealand/Aotearoa).

 

Rewards

This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£5 or more

£5 Reward

Thank you for believing in our project! We'll included you in electronic updates and your name in our website's Thank You page, once it is up and running.

£10 or more

£10 Reward

A thank you for backing Moulinet Chocolat! You will receive 1x pack Chocolate callets (120g), 1x pack Chilli peppers (50g), a set of three postcards, and electronic updates of our project in return for your support.

£25 or more

£25 Reward

Keep Calm and Drink Chocolate Inspired by the most recognisable British World War II slogan coined by the Ministry of Information in 1939: make a modern version of chocolate de batirol (Philippine hot chocolate). You will receive: 2x packs Chocolate callets (120g), 2x packs Coconut sugar (200g), 2x packs Chilli peppers (50g), and 2x set of three postcards.

£50 or more

£50 Reward

Let them eat chocolate! In keeping with historical fiction, we’ve appropriated ‘Qu’ils mangent de la brioche!’ attributed to Marie Antoinette. You will receive: 2x packs Chocolate callets (120g) for truffles, ganache, cakes; 2x packs Cacao nibs (100g) for cookies, cake décor, shakes; 2x packs Coconut sugar (200g); 1x pack Chilli peppers (50g).

£50 or more

£50 Reward

Chocolate Certificates These are non-transferable, non-convertible, Payment in Kind (PIK) bonds in multiples of £50. A certificate will be issued that can be used for online purchase once the Moulinet Chocolat website is ready for e-commerce. The range will include all Kablon Farm products: certified organic fermented Trinitario cacao beans (US$4/kg Ex-Works), chocolate callets, cacao nibs, cocosugar, seasonal jams, chilli peppers. In addition, other travel dates for future Chocolate Adventures will be announced. A 2% Gross Annual Return is payable if bonds are redeemed only after a year. (Inspired by Angus Thirlwell and Peter Harris’ Hotel Chocolat Bonds)

£100 or more

£100 Reward

Chocolate Certificates These are non-transferable, non-convertible, Payment in Kind (PIK) bonds in multiples of £100. A certificate will be issued that can be used for online purchase once the Moulinet Chocolat website is ready for e-commerce. The range will include all Kablon Farm products: certified organic fermented Trinitario cacao beans (US$4/kg Ex-Works), chocolate callets, cacao nibs, cocosugar, seasonal jams, chilli peppers. In addition, other travel dates for future Chocolate Adventures will be announced. A 2% Gross Annual Return is payable if bonds are redeemed only after a year. (Inspired by Angus Thirlwell and Peter Harris’ Hotel Chocolat Bonds.)

£250 or more

£250 Reward

Chocolate Certificates These are non-transferable, non-convertible, Payment in Kind (PIK) bonds in multiples of £250. A certificate will be issued that can be used for online purchase once the Moulinet Chocolat website is ready for e-commerce. The range will include all Kablon Farm products: certified organic fermented Trinitario cacao beans (US$4/kg Ex-Works), chocolate callets, cacao nibs, cocosugar, seasonal jams, chilli peppers. In addition, other travel dates for future Chocolate Adventures will be announced. A 2% Gross Annual Return is payable if bonds are redeemed only after a year. (Inspired by Angus Thirlwell and Peter Harris’ Hotel Chocolat Bonds.)

£350 or more

£350 Reward

Multi-cropped Farm Hamper A celebration of the principles of sustainability: 5x packs Chocolate callets (120g); 5x packs Cacao nibs (100g); 2x packs Coconut sugar (200g); 5x jars jams/preserves (265g) coconut, papaya/calamansi, mangosteen, guava, pineapple, durian, jackfruit (combination will depend on fruit availability); 5x packs Chilli peppers (50g), and 5x set of postcards.

£500 or more

0 of 5 claimed

£500 Reward

Heirloom Criollo For the ultimate connoisseur with the roasting, conching, and tempering equipment and skills. Turn 10kg of single estate Criollo cacao beans from Kablon Farm into your favourite chocolate delights.

£1,000 or more

0 of 10 claimed

£1,000 Reward

The Chocolate Adventure 4-day trip starting on the first day from Davao to the warehouses where international buyers and traders come to buy Philippine cacao before travelling on to Kablon Farms in South Cotabato; on the second day, climb Mount Matutum; and on the third and fourth days, recover from the climb before travelling to General Santos City where the flight back to the Philippine capital, Manila, departs from. Included in the four day trip are: land transport to/from/around Davao, Tupi, Mount Matutum, and General Santos City; three nights pension-style accommodation; three meals per day; and all clearances, permits, and fees associated with the climb including the native/endangered tree-planting scheme by Mount Matuttum Protected Landscape Protected Area Management Board (MMPL-PAMB). NOTE: International airfares to/from the Philippines, and all domestic fares from Manila to Davao City, and from General Santos City to Manila are NOT included.


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