Chocolate with a clear conscience

Jeff Steinberg founded Latitude Craft Chocolate as a vertically integrated social enterprise in 2016. The name ‘Latitude’ refers to where Latitude started, in the town of Kasese, Uganda, which sits on the equator – at exactly latitude 0°.

After several years working with organizations measuring social impact, Jeff became fascinated with the idea of a company that could sustainably support thousands of rural African farmers on a day-to-day basis.

He and his team pinpointed a market niche for high-quality Ugandan cocoa. Incredibly, they then decided to build an industry from scratch, on a mission to establish a reputation for quality Ugandan cocoa.

Their aim is to create a sustainable supply chain which serves both farmers and chocolate companies. The team’s obsession with quality and sustainable development ensured that their first attempts at making chocolate at origin, soon gave way to a bean-to-bar chocolate factory in Kampala. After having started with a small team of three, making the chocolate in Jeff’s own kitchen, the company is now a certified B-Corp, run by over 25 full-time young and extremely motivated Ugandan staff. The resulting chocolate is aromatic and excellent quality, with vibrant packaging.

Latitude source their cocoa beans from 2,500 farmers, with the aim to increase to 10,000 by 2026. No middle men are involved; Latitude buy fresh cacao beans and do all the processing themselves. Through the Latitude supplier program, long-term contracts are signed with farmers to grow organic cacao, promote biodiversity and ensure fair labour practices on all farms. This is guaranteed by routine visits and inspections to each individual supplier in the program.

Latitude pay premium prices: 50% above the Ghana market price, with a floor price, to ensure farmers have the best chance of supporting their households. Latitude also provide their partners with access to insurance (health, disability and life) and training in everything from organic practices to financial literacy.