A Sweet Capitalist
Maya Schoop-Rutten is the owner and chocolate-maker behind Chocolate Maya, a chocolate store in Santa Barbara that offers handcrafted, fair-trade, and direct-sourced chocolates. Maya has traveled the world visiting the farms where the cacao is produced that she sources.
Chocolate is a year-round love affair for most of us, but Valentine’s Day is an extra special day for chocolate and chocolate lovers. This makes Valentine’s Day the perfect time to highlight the impact of supporting organic, fair trade chocolate and local artisans.
In the US, we consumed about 3.6 billion pounds of chocolate in 2010. We spent about 18 million dollars on chocolate confections and that number has continued to grow, despite the economic downturn. Those figures represent a lot of consumer power. If we choose wisely with our dollars, we strengthen efforts to increase the use of sustainable farming and fair labor practices and the number of fair trade farmer cooperatives within the cacao farming and chocolate manufacturing industries.
So, when buying chocolates for your loved one this Valentine’s Day, make choices that support good capitalism. If you happen to live in our great town, you can make a wise and delicious choice by visiting Chocolate Maya.
This charming chocolate oasis, run by proprietor Maya Schoop-Rutten, provides locals and visitors with the opportunity to indulge in a little sweetness (ok, sometimes more than a little) while supporting fair-trade and organic products.
In addition to offering fair-trade and organic packaged chocolates, Maya is a chocolate artisan and handcrafts her own truffles and hand-dipped confections. She travels to cacao plantations all over the world in order to meet the growers and ensure that labor conditions are fair and farming practices are sustainable. To top it all off, her handmade delights are packaged up using environmentally friendly materials.
Maya shared her wonderful chocolates and stories about her sweet adventures at our Valentines For Good event last Thursday from 6pm – 9pm at Reds Bar and Tapas.
Make sure to check out her shop at 15 W. Gutierrez St in Santa Barbara!