Latin American Women Leaders
In Fine Chocolate & Cacao
Thursday, February 11, 2021
Join chef, culinary historian and James Beard Award winning author Maricel Presilla for the launch of a series on women leaders in fine chocolate and cacao. Meet the remarkable women who are reshaping all aspects of the industry in Latin America and gaining visibility as chocolate makers, farmers, exporters, entrepreneurs and visionaries. Her guests are:
Ana Beatriz Parizot (Mexico)
With degrees in communication and marketing, Beatriz Parizot Wolter is the administrative director of Hacienda La Luz, a family-owned cacao farm in historic Comalcalco, the most important cacao-growing municipality in the state of Tabasco. Together with her husband Alejandro Campos Beltrán, she also runs Chocolates Wolter, an award-winning craft chocolate company that continues the pioneering work of Parizot’s German grandfather, Otto Wolter, a respected physician who began making chocolate with Tabasco cacao in 1958. Passionate about her region’s rich cacao history, Parizot has curated a small museum at Hacienda La Luz, housing equipment from the original Wolter factory and a collection of traditional artifacts used in the processing of cacao and the making of craft chocolate in Tabasco, She has also helped preserve the botanical diversity of her family farm where cacao shares space with towering shade and fruit trees that offer refuge to the local fauna, including bands of howling monkeys.
Lisi Montoya of Shattel Chocolate (Peru)
A pioneer of the craft chocolate movement in Peru since 2009, Lisa Montoya is a leader of her country’s fine chocolate industry. She owns and runs a small chocolate factory in a hidden corner of historic Pachacamac, an ancient Inca site by the Lurín River, south of Lima. A model of efficient and Spartan planning, the factory, operated by Montoya and a small group of local women trained by her, produces a broad range of products made from fine cacao for national consumption and for export to more than a dozen countries around the world, from the US to Taiwan. Since 2014, Montoya has been working directly with regional farmers in designing the proper post-harvest protocols for heirloom cacao for which she pays a premium. Shattell Chocolate Chuncho 70% won a Gold and was named Best in Competition in the 2017 International Chocolate Awards World Final. Montoya is first Latin American woman to have garnered such distinction.
Nadia Rizek of Rizek Cacao (Dominican Republic)
Nadia Rizek is the fifth generation of an important line of cacao growers and exporters of Palestinian descent responsible for putting fine Dominican cacao on the map. With degrees in Entrepreneurship from Babson College and a master’s degree in Marketing from New York University, she has been in charge of the company’s US flagship chocolate shop and factory in Williamsburg, NY, since its inception in 2019. Growing up around cacao and chocolate has made her emotionally attached to this project. She sees it not only as an extension of her family’s trajectory, but also a showcase for quality Dominican cacao and a service to artisan chocolate makers here in the US.
Daisy Polanco, Project Coordinator – Rizek Cacao, S.A.S.
Women play crucial roles in Rizek Cacao, S.A.S, from running the company’s KahKow shops and chocolate factories in the US and the Dominican Republic to managing the company’s sizable exports, from handling marketing and communication to implementing programs of social responsibility in the field. A lawyer specializing in Corporate Communications and Corporate Social Responsibility, with project management experience in multiple public and private entities in the Dominican Republic and Switzerland, Daisy Polanco has worked for Rizek Cacao S.A.S since 2017, currently focusing on the conceptualization of the Kahkow brand in the United States.
Registration deadline for live webinar is February 9, 2021
February 11, 2021
9am PST, 10am MST, 11am CST, 12pm EST
Members must be logged into FCIA website in order to receive complimentary registration for this webinar. A separate email will be sent out through Zoom with the link to access the live webinar the day before the webinar. All sales are final.