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Chicza Organic Rainforest Gum is exactly what it sounds like: gum that comes from the chicle tree found in the Mayan rainforest. The chicle tree is just one of many tropical trees in the world that produces its own type of elastic rubber, which is made by boiling the sap from the tree into a thick paste. Once cooled the rubber is an organic and eco-friendly alternative to the synthetic and non-biodegradable rubber known as polyisobutylene which is used to make the inner tubes of tires used in most gum today!
The people of the Mayan rainforest in Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, known as chicleros, have been sustaining the natural resources of the rainforest for over a century. About 2,000 chicleros live in an area of rainforest about 1.3 million hectares wide. These Mayan people have survived political control to become an independent community, so to help build up the economy they decided to manufacture the Chicza gum. Not only did they want to prove that they could survive as a people, but they also wanted to show that gum could be 100% natural and waste-free.
No more mess on pavements, tube, bus seats, shoes and carpets becuase one of the advantages of Chicza's composition is its biodegradability. Once disposed of, its all-natural components will become dust within weeks. (It can actually improve the texture of compost).
Chicza's natural taste aims to capture the essence of fresh and wild fruits, herbs and spices, and that original gummy and chewy consistence that only natural gum can give. We Stock All five Great flavours that are presently available (with more on the horizon) wild mint, cinnamon, mexican lime, spearmint with the newest addition Mixed berry.
Chicza is a great organic product with five flavors and a ton of benefits to the environment. Since this gum is harvested from living trees in the Mexican rainforest, the forest will be protected and carefully managed. Chicza was launched last year in London and Mexico, but now you can find it in many countries worldwide.
Any guess on what the most stubborn and pervasive pollutant of the urban environment might be? It affects 94% of shopping centres, 71% of train stations - it is chewing gum!
As a UK population, we spit out 3.5 billion spent sticks of gum a year. In busier parts of London there are an average 20 trodden-in gobbets on every paving stone, a grand 300,000 of them just on Oxford Street !
There are 56 cooperatives made up of around 2,000 chicleros working in an area of 1.3 million hectares of rainforest. They form the Consorcio Chiclero, the coordinating body which manages the production, the logistics, the trade and the finances for the manufacture of gum from the chicozapote tree. They are the creators of Chicza.
The popularity of chewing gum has fuelled the growth and consolidation of the chiclero cooperatives for almost a century. They survived the wave of political control that either terminated or neutralised Mexican agro-coops during the 1970s. They not only stayed independent, but grew stronger and better organised. At the dawn of the new millennium, they formed a consortium: the Consorcio Chiclero.
The Consorcio's long term goal has been to transform chicle from a simple ingredient in other people's products into a finished product of their own. It has taken five years to bring that product to the market: it is Chicza.
The concept of Sustainability is central to the work of the Consorcio. It is not only about preserving natural resources, but also about allowing equal and balanced exchanges among many individual elements: the forest, the farmers and their families, the manufacture and the transportation and the sale of Chicza to consumers who believe in fairness. Fair trade schemes are bringing much better economical dynamics to many groups of poor farmers around the world: but this goes only so far. Using the concept of ‘value added', the chicleros both make and sell the chewing gum, giving each farmer an income 6 times higher than he would earn as a mere provider of raw material.
Everyone who chews Chicza is making a personal and direct contribution to a better life for a chiclero and his family. In return, the farmer continues to preserve the forest where he and his family live. Actions like this lead to a greener planet.
In Nature We Trust
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