The sign is officially up! congrats on a great 1st Friday event @TheMakeryHilo & @PunaChocolate via Instagram
The sign is officially up! congrats on a great 1st Friday event @TheMakeryHilo & @PunaChocolate via Instagram
My journey started with the awareness that my actions weren’t linked to my true values.
I discovered that one of my favorite comfort foods, chocolate, was associated with so many injustices, including child slave labor, poverty, land grabs, endangered species, deforestation and green house gas emissions. I spent more money on chocolate that was labeled with various certifications believing the extra amount paid elevated lives. I thought that this money must go back to the farmer and their community. Right? Wrong.
As a thinker and problem solver, I have always challenged the status quo. My passion has always been pioneering non-traditional products within companies that served a myriad of unmet needs (it was never enough to just solve one need). Hence, I was inspired to start a company that was aligned with my values, passions and purpose while also dovetailing with the varied needs throughout all of our local communities and the varied needs of those in cacao growing regions.
Simply, this journey and our goals have been huge and perhaps daunting, but also inspiring and invigorating. Many people tilt their heads when hearing about our big picture plan for the first time. That’s okay, because most pioneers know that they are stretching beyond the current point of comfort for the purpose of innovation. We do breathe a little easier knowing that the research facts we have uncovered are aligned with our beliefs that businesses, consumers, academic institutions and positive impact investors will each find value in CocoaCompassion®. Onward ho!
|If you share in our dream for more people to be economically independent in a fast-paced global economy, if you value free expression, innovation and entrepreneurship, then join us on this journey. We will bring you inside the story. You can hear about why we are developing new products, introducing thought provoking experiences, debating hot topics and listening to new ideas.
Ready? Let’s go. Perhaps chocolate can be a tool for you, too 🙂
– Joy Batashoff Thaler
CocoaCompassion® envisions a world where no one is locked into a cycle of poverty; where all have the opportunity to lead fulfilling lives, complete with passion, purpose, and economic independence.
We focus on inspiring people to achieve better lives. We accomplish this by providing opportunities and training through the use of chocolate and tapping of local resources.
We believe chocolate is a way to get people talking, help them come together and achieve richer lives. Our products will be a conduit to exploring hot topics that are impacting people, local businesses and academic institutions. Interactive experiences will reinforce the topics being addressed, the messages being shared and the lasting impact. By connecting chocolate, a comfort food, with homegrown resources, our approach is deemed fun, effective and hyperlocal. As such, it can drive home a broad-based message with the specific needs of each local community. As a social enterprise, we reinvest profits earned to provide people in underserved communities with the same high-value skills.
Our leadership team is interdisciplinary. We come out of manufacturing, film, marketing, academia, finance, climate smart farming, applied science, engineering, foraging, coaching, culinary design, intellectual property law, ecoagriculture, design thinking, sales,rural development, environmental justice, machine learning,consulting,and more.
Joy Batashoff Thaler – Founder, CocoaCompassion™
Joy’s career can be characterized by a proven ability to drive exceptional results.
Most recently, Batashoff Thaler was an integral part of the Enterprise Team at media/information giant Thomson Reuters, responsible for bringing machine-readable news to market. As a key member of both the innovation and sales divisions, Joy has developed a deep understanding of how large pools of data can be brought together to discern patterns, optimize decision making and reveal unique insights. In her sales role at Thomson Reuters, she was a CEO Circle winner, having placed in the Top 1% of a global sales organization.
As Senior Brand Manager at both CBSNews.com and Fujifilm’s “QuickSnap,” Batashoff Thaler nurtured what were then fledgling businesses. At CBSNews.com, she led rebranding efforts that focused on driving users back and forth between tv viewership and website usage. At Fujifilm, Joy’s efforts contributed to multi-million dollar revenue growth through new channels of distribution and differentiated product usage. Her skill sets have been applied across a wide range of sectors, including financial services, media, technology and consumer packaged goods. Joy has been recognized for identifying areas of untapped opportunity, pioneering new products, and forging partnerships that take brands beyond traditional boundaries; her awards include “Best In Show” from BrandWeek, and Point of Purchase Advertising International (POPAI) Silver & Bronze awards.
Joy, a socially conscious mom and self-confessed chocoholic, is passionate about the global cocoa market, and the importance of truth and transparency. Batashoff Thaler’s efforts, in conjunction with key stakeholders across the coffee supply chain drove her to better understand the needs of small holder cacao farmers; these farmers were looking to flee an industry that has kept them, in many cases, living below the poverty line. The fiery passion that resulted from her findings led her to start CocoaCompassion.
Joy has a B.A. from George Washington University, and is a graduate of Ecole Chocolat with a focus on bean-to-bar chocolate making and the cocoa value chain.
CocoaCompassion® is constantly seeking partners to create new markets where chocolate and local resources are tools that bring people together and power thought provoking engagement within and across communities.
It was through the exploration of partners that CocoaCompassion founder, Joy Thaler, was introduced to Dr. Neil Scott, a former research engineer at Stanford University and founder of The Makery in Hilo, Hawaii which is a unique space that provides training and resources that will empower companies and individuals to perform 21st Century manufacturing in Hawaii.
Albizia trees have caused problems statewide. These invasive albizia trees are perceived to be structurally weak. Great work is being conducted to overcome these misconceptions which could help ease Hawaii’s housing crisis. The Makery is actively educating communities about upcycling this invasive species and using high value tools to create and market valuable wooden merchandise.
CocoaCompassion®️ Collaborations: Powering Responsible Businesses
20% profit from the CocoaCompassion® products you purchase will be reinvested to provide underserved communities with the high-value skills and resources needed to turn local ingredients and materials into finished products that pave a path towards economic independence.
Contact us for pricing and more information Contact Us
Do you have a group of 10 or more? Whether you are a business interested in offering your customers or employees a fun hands-on activity or a charity looking for a unique fundraising event, we would love to hear from you! Contact us below if you are interested in learning more about our private events.
We want to hear from you. We want to address the topics that matter most you. We want to work together.
Dr. Neil Scott, founder of The Makery in Hilo, Hawaii, is a unique concept that provides individuals with the knowledge, skills, tools and resources to transform their own ideas into real functioning products.
Dr. Scott is recognized as one of fifteen Bay Area futurists who would shape the way people live, think, work, and play in the new millennium.
The Makery was seeded after Dr. Scott joined the University of Hawai`i with support from the National Science Foundation to continue the research and design he began at Stanford University in 1992.
Dr. Scott’s experience and documentation has convinced him that coping with our complex technology-based world requires:
Kris Schumacher – Partner at Traverse Food
Kris is an experienced marketing and finance professional, has held director level positions at both global corporations and small boutique firms, and maintains an active consultancy where he works with social-impact startups.
In addition to his work with CocoaCompassion, Kris is the the founding partner at Traverse Food and Lokaal Market, the co-founder of Nextdoorganics Inc., and the acting CFO at 4PFoods.
Prior to jumping into the start-up world, he worked in the film industry, where be developed digital technology for HeavyLight, a start-up special effects house. He left the film industry to study entrepreneurship extensively at Babson College where he received his MBA in 2004, and has since specialized in supply and demand economics, leading the pricing department at large multi-national corporations, managing currency risk, commodity price fluctuations, and contract risk across a complex supply chain.
Having been born into a farming family and spending his childhood partially off-grid on a tree farm in the middle of the woods in New England, he is passionate about sustainability and responsible land use, and works with companies making an impact in this area
Valerie Greenberg – Principal at The Greenberg Law Firm
Valerie is the principal of The Greenberg Law Firm, which she founded in 2001. The firm counsels clients of every size, from startups and midsized companies to publicly-traded firms. She typically functions in the role of outside general counsel and is responsible for all legal issues faced by her clients, many of which she handles on her own. Valerie’s clients operate in a wide range of industries, from technology hardware and software manufacturers and biotechnology firms, to tableware and home goods designers, food companies, clothing designers, landscape artists, art conservation firms and fragrance creators. Areas of practice in which she concentrates include all forms of contracts (including supplier, reseller, and employment agreements as well as intellectual property licenses and leases), trademark work and general corporate matters, such as corporate formation and transactional work.
Prior to founding The Greenberg Law Firm, Valerie served as General Counsel (in-house) for Dot Hill Systems Corp. Following Dot Hill’s merger and relocation to the west coast, the NASDAQ-listed company remained a client of The Greenberg Law Firm until its acquisition by Seagate Technologies in 2015, at which time the The Greenberg Law Firm began handling legal matters for Seagate as well. From 1993 to 1998, Valerie was an Assistant District Attorney in Philadelphia, first in the trial division and then in the civil litigation unit defending the District Attorney’s Office and its employees from federal civil rights and discrimination claims. Highlights of her career as a prosecutor included several felony jury trials, hundreds of bench trials, a perfect record defending the District Attorney’s Office in federal court, and a successful argument before the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals.
Valerie earned a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from the Boston University School of Law, where she was a Paul J. Liacos Distinguished Scholar. She was born in Brooklyn, raised in Queens, and educated in the Bronx, at the Horace Mann School. Valerie now lives in Westchester County with her husband, Michael, and three children, Jonathan, Matthew and Zoe.
Laurie Benson – Owner at Boutique Yin Studio and Laurie Benson Coaching
Laurie is a transformational coach. Her clients have been incredibly successful in life “doing”. They are accomplished entrepreneurs, and leaders in their field and lives. They have reached a point where they want to be doing more, contributing in a greater way. They are ready to step into the power and beauty of “being”. Prior, Laurie was the founder of 1% For Women, focusing on empowering and uplifting women in agriculture on a global level.
She believes that the empowerment of women is a crucial component to changing worldwide economic, environmental and social degradation. Laurie is also co-owner of The Village, a Fair Trade store that further supports women and artisans in communities around the world.