We love Acai! But not only because it is healthy and tastes incredibly good. Palm trees are one of the best ways to protect the climate. Correctly read! That's why we donate five percent of our sales to the Brazilian NGOs IPAM and Iniciativa Verde and support projects that reforest the rainforest.
Forests are one of the most effective ways to reduce carbon in the atmosphere, according to scientists. In Brazil alone, a total of 49.7 million hectares are available for this purpose - where our miracle berry is at home. There is no time to lose in combating climate change. "If we act now, we could reduce the CO2 content in the atmosphere by 25 percent. The last time such quantities were recorded was almost a century ago," says Tom Crowther, a researcher at ETH Zurich and lead author of a renowned study.
What is the challenge?
We are not "simply" planting trees to solve the problems. We start where it literally "burns": in the economy. Many properties in Brazil are privately owned and used for agriculture. But it is important to understand that the vast majority of fires that are started in the Amazon are not aimed at destroying the forest. The farmers burn down their land because they lack machinery and fertilizers - and because they use them for their livelihood. Simply planting trees without considering the economic relevance of the yield would drive many families into financial ruin, because most of them earn most of their money from the agricultural industry.
In 2019 alone, almost four times more forest area was cleared in the Amazon than in previous years. Brazil's export-oriented agriculture requires ever new areas, which is why huge forests are being destroyed in the rainforest and the Cerrado savannah in southeast Brazil. The cleared areas are mostly used first as pasture land and then soya is grown on them. Brazil is the world's largest exporter of soya and beef.
What is the key to cooperation?
To protect the environment and ensure the financial existence of people: this is possible if we change our minds! An important part of our project consists in educating local farmers. Our experts show the locals the powerful advantages that an intact forest can offer them.
By growing local fruits such as cocoa or açaí, they secure a stable and sustainable income in the long term, which naturally protects their environment. Contrary to the agricultural industry, no areas have to be cleared. The water quality improves, the soil becomes more fertile and nature flourishes. In addition to modern, agricultural practices, the need for strict protection of the rainforest is therefore also at stake.
With the money we donate, we finance a project duration of two years: that's how long it takes to ensure that the seedlings thrive and that the farmers are able to continue their own business from then on. The fires in the Amazon are man-made, and man can stop them again - through cooperation, investment in forest protection and sustainable agriculture. If we succeed in retraining all farmers and in the long term switch to a plant-based, fully-fledged food industry, we can make a significant contribution to climate protection.