Todd Masonis, along with his partner Cameron Ring, started their social enterprise Dandelion Chocolate back in 2010. As well as reviving the art of high-quality, freshly-made chocolate, the entrepreneurial duo thrive on offering donations to community initiatives.
How Todd Masonis is Solving Exploitation in the Cacao Sector
Brimming with bright ideas, Todd Masonis of Dandelion Chocolate likes simplicity. He believes that beautiful chocolate should be made with as little interference and superfluous ingredients as possible. With a strong conviction that high-quality chocolatiers in the US are on the decline, Masonis turned success with an Internet-based enterprise into an ethical outfit determined to help communities and cacao farmers around the world.
Dandelion Chocolate focuses on placing two ingredients into their products: cacao beans, and cane sugar to release the flavors. It’s a model that seems to be working, with their goods being sold around the States, as well as worldwide in Japan, the UK, and The Netherlands for starters.
Their journeys to source beans for the company’s chocolates have taken them to Venezuela and Colombia, where they have found villages devastated by economic difficulties and political uprisings. As such, Dandelion Chocolate is committed to supporting charities that help farmers in disadvantaged nations by making cocoa farming more sustainable through fair prices and innovations.
Non-profits in San Francisco that focus on community cohesion also benefit, and can apply for funding from the business. This is another step that Masonis takes to ensuring that San Franciscans get the opportunity to benefit from high-quality food, better education, and ways to move on from disadvantage and poverty.
About Dandelion Chocolate’s Entrepreneur for a Change: Todd Masonis
Todd Masonis started out with Plaxo, a service that offered users an online address book that would automatically update when phone numbers, addresses, website URLs and social media accounts changed. Once it was sold, this gave the entrepreneur the chance to pursue his passion to be a fine chocolatier. Although his background was in computing, he felt an urge to break away and focus on giving back.
One of his biggest attributes is determination: the Dandelion Chocolate ‘bean to bar’ method that worked took close to two years to perfect. The pride in the final product, and the confidence to charge more for quality, is integral to how donations can be made both in San Francisco and on other continents.
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