Alex WhitmoreOwner, Taza Chocolate
Alex knows his chocolate. As the founder of Taza Chocolate, a stone-ground bean-to-bar chocolate maker based in Somerville, MA, Alex has been traveling the world seeking exciting new cacao sources for years, and is currently sourcing cacao beans from the Dominican Republic, Bolivia, and Belize. A pioneer of the Direct Trade model for cacao sourcing, Alex has remained closely involved with the company since his first investment in 2010 as an advisor and coordinated MMC's first institutional investment from Taza Chocolate in October of 2012.
Emily StoneCo-founder of Maya Mountain Cacao and Cacao Verapaz
Emily Stone is the Guatemala-based co-founder and CEO of Maya Mountain Cacao (Belize), Cacao Verapaz (Guatemala), and the Uncommon Cocoa Group. Stone's work has been recognized for impact by Ashoka, Agora Partnerships, the McNulty Foundation, the World Wildlife Fund, the William James Foundation, and more. Originally from Boston, MA, USA, she has lived in Central America since 2010 and has a BA from Georgetown University.
Richard FaloticoManager, Cocoa Merchant at Atlantic Cocoa Company (Ecom Trading)
Richard Falotico is manager and cocoa merchant at Atlantic Cocoa Company, where he is responsible for trading, purchase and sale of cocoa beans and related products. Mr. Falotico manages logistics for cocoa and acts as liaison between Atlantic's corporate and local functions. He works extensively with small cocoa farmers to bring high quality specialty cocoa beans to market, fostering the burgeoning specialty chocolate segment in the U.S. and abroad. Mr. Falotico is a Board Member at the Cocoa Merchants Association of America and holds a Series 3 license.
Jeff PzenaCo-owner of Cotton Tree Lodge, Cotton Tree Chocolate and
Jeff has been doing business in Belize for over a decade as co-founder of Cotton Tree Lodge, an off-the-grid eco-resort on the same grounds as MMC, Cotton Tree Chocolate, a local female-run and -operated chocolate company, and Moho Chocolate, MMC's primary domestic customer in Belize and a key tourist destination for cruise ship visitors to Belize City. Jeff visits Belize frequently, but is based in New York.