El Rey offers consumers gourmet chocolate made from fairly traded cacao beans direct from small and large-scale growers in Venezuela. In our business there is no extraordinary cast of middlemen, otherwise known as “coyotes”, who pay the lowest price to growers. On the contrary, El Rey seeks to balance the inequities found in the conventional third world trade by having established Aprocao, which is a democratically run cooperative managed by El Rey and which pays above-market prices for its cacao beans.
Our trading partners are small growers and large who deal directly with Aprocao without intermediaries. Through Aprocao El Rey teaches growers how to manage the soil in a sustainable agricultural system promoting natural cycles without chemical pesticides or fertilizers and how to ferment each cacao harvest to earn the best price. To quote PCC Natural Markets, “El Rey Chocolate also pays a premium to the Venezuelan farmers that grow its cacao…"