In June, Na Floresta, the company that manufactures the Na'kau chocolate, received organic certification from the Maniva Participative System. According to Artur Coimbra, director of Na Floresta, this is the first organic certification of a chocolate factory in the Amazon.
“We are among the 15 organic chocolate brands in Brazil, among the 200 that exist. This is really cool for our state, it's an achievement. We can say that in addition to the first chocolate factory in the Amazon, we are the first chocolate factory in the Amazon to have the organic seal,” analyzes Artur.
The company has nine employees and is preparing to expand its operations nationwide, with the opening of a branch in São Paulo by the end of the year.
In addition to the Brazilian market, Na'kau chocolate is also sold to the US and Japan. With the certification, the company hopes to gain scale and increase the number of consumers globally.
According to Márcio Menezes, coordinator of Maniva Agroecology Network (REMA), the company's organic certification represents the victory of those who are committed to the organic chain with rural producers in Amazonas.
Participatory certification and the Maniva Network
REMA is a social movement formed by farmers, technicians, students, consumers and organizations with the objective of promoting agroecology and organic production in the state of Amazonas.
It is also the only OPAC (Participatory Conformity Assessment Body) in the Northern region of Brazil. A kind of collective certifier, which counts on the participation of agricultural producers, technicians and people who, collectively, attest that the food is organic.
Participatory certification is provided for in Brazilian legislation and is fairer to family farmers, who often do not have the financial resources to pay for certification by company audit.
It is based on two fundamental principles: social control – how farmers organize themselves to verify each other's ownership and ensure that production is really organic – and joint responsibility – together respond to irregularities if necessary.
Photo: Disclosure in the Forest/Na'kau
Understanding what is built into the value of a product that is purchased is a process of transparency that is very desirable for consumers in general. In the case of indigenous crafts and art, it allows us to understand how ethical, fair and balanced are the relationships with those who produce this art and crafts.
And that's exactly what the Tucum Brazil since June, when it launched its transparent pricing. The methodology allows us to understand the percentage of the value of the product that goes to each sector of the complex chain of indigenous handicrafts.
A commitment signed by the company with associations, cooperatives, family nuclei, indigenous artisans and artisans from traditional communities in Brazil, partners and supporters in strengthening the struggle for the re-existence of indigenous peoples through handicrafts and the promotion of fair trade.
How it works:
→ 40% of what is paid is related to the labor of the product, the value that the artisan or the indigenous initiative that produced the craft receives
→ 7% refers to expenses with logistics, which makes the product travel from the forest to Tucum
→ 20% of the amount covers Tucum's administrative operating expenses - salaries and charges of employees, rent, electricity, internet, accounting
→ 16% guarantees the commissions of the service and communication team – photography, video, research and essential content creation to value the knowledge and present the stories of those who create the products
→ 10% of what is paid is related to taxes and fees
→ 7% is intended for financial expenses, such as payment of loans and reinvestments, a park that Tucum can increasingly expand its positive impacts on the lives of artisans and artisans
Every Friday, Tucum launches a radar with the week's indigenous agenda. The Observatory section can be checked weekly on the company blog.
“It's a radar of culture, arts, demonstrations, struggles. A place where we bring what is happening during the week within the indigenous movement, in whatever order. June was very beautiful, because the indigenous people spent the entire month doing the Levante for Earth, against the time frame and the PL 490,” says Amanda Santana, partner and creative director at Tucum.
The company is advancing in communication actions involving the creative work of the indigenous people. The PIOK, an artivism print that has the intention of always presenting an indigenous artist. The first issue addresses the context of the indigenous people who live in the city, who do not have a village, and features an illustration by Natália Lobo Tupinambá. We can, through handicrafts, but not only, subsidize and promote these struggles as well, and give space to indigenous people from this more creative part. This started last year when we launched an editorial made entirely by indigenous people, and we continue to seek to promote actions that have the participation of indigenous creators, artists, musicians, in short”, says Amanda.
Initial photo: @helenapcooper/tucumbrasil
Mercado Livre (MELI), the leader in technology for e-commerce and financial services in Latin America, began training in the selected businesses in June for the third edition of the Empreender com Impacto program.
The program is part of MELI's sustainability strategy and has taken place in several Latin American countries since 2019. In Brazil, this year's edition seeks to support the sale of sustainable projects in the Amazon, Cerrado and Atlantic Forest.
Businesses will have training on how to sell on the MELI platform, including commercial strategy, logistics and digital marketing. And they will also have benefits and discounts in the Mercado Livre ecosystem, specialized mentorships in marketing and visibility in the sustainable products section of the platform.
“Strengthening the commercial strategy of these projects can leverage the positive impacts of these businesses, boosting income generation in the territories, strengthening sustainable production chains and contributing to the conservation of biodiversity” says Laura Motta, Sustainability Manager at Mercado Livre.
Most of the participating businesses are formed by traditional, indigenous, quilombola, riverside communities, among others, focusing mainly on the food and beverage, handicraft and cosmetics categories. In addition, more than 50% of the leaders of these businesses are black, around 12% are indigenous and more than half are women.
The selection of businesses was made by the Giral Viveiro de Projetos consultancy with the support of partners such as AMAZ, Climate Ventures and the Amazônia em Casa Movement, Floresta em Pé.
90 businesses are part of the program, among more than 250 subscribers. Among those selected, around 50 are active in the Amazon. This business universe includes startups that are part of the movement Amazon at home, Forest standing, who received advice and training throughout 2020 and boosted their sales on the Mercado Livre platform and on the Amazon Hub as a resilience strategy in the covid-19 pandemic.
“Impact businesses, especially those in the Amazon, need support to access the market and enter the online world once and for all, which has become mandatory in this pandemic period. Having Mercado Livre as a partner in this journey of online sales, engaged in training these entrepreneurs and strengthening them, can only add to the business and consumers, who will be increasingly closer to tasty, beautiful products that contribute to the conservation of our biomes”, analyzes Ana Carolina Bastida, responsible for investment management and acceleration at AMAZ.
This year, among the Amazonian businesses that participate in Empreender com Impacto is the Jambul, cachaça manufactured by Tipiti, accelerated startup in 2019.
“We learned about the Empreender com Impacto Biodiversidade + program from a group of Amazonian entrepreneurs that we have been part of since 2019, when we participated in the acceleration. We decided to participate because it is exactly what we need right now – to optimize logistics and sales. We are already on the Mercado Livre platform, but from what we realized in this first week of mentoring the program, we can improve a lot. We want to sell more, in an optimized and professional way, and the program solves exactly these pains”, assesses Glinnis da Rocha, one of Tipiti's partners.
A Guide to Impact Business