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The Full Story

Our Concept

Cloud Forest Organics is revolutionizing the concept of bioeconomy by putting wildlife and nature first, while developing forest-derived foods. From our 240-acre pilot site in the upper Amazon, we are developing and testing reforestation models, including rewilding.

The trees targeted are IUCN red list species such as cedars and wax palms, as well as native species with culinary and cosmetic potential: wild walnut (tocte or nogal), logma fruit (akin to lucuma), dragon’s blood for the curative sap, and protein-packed legume chachafruto also known as porotón. We’re collaborating with local schools and community to recover cloud forests holistically and deliciously.

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Our mission

Cloudforest Organics aims to be a world-class learning center for develop models for converting degraded pasture lands in the Andean Amazon back into forest, rich with next-generation wild-grown superfoods. We also develop new ingredients for environmentally conscious consumers by prioritizing water resources recovery, wildlife and flora recovery, while charting a path for cloud forest recovery regionally and globally.

Our vision

We believe that wildlife and nature responses to human-supporting bioeconomy systems need to be understood if we are truly going to have a positive environmental impact at scale.  So while we are experimenting with different agroforestry systems, all with native tree species, we aim to protect and rebuild the habitat of the We believe research is key, which is why we are currently building a research center on site, built ecologically with fallen trees and stone around the site, and hope to work together with leading research institutions to learn and grow.

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Founder

Craig Leon , embarked on educational and farming programs to help restart the production of quinoa alongside rural communities back in the 1980s and was the country's first exporter of honeydew melons to Europe. In 1992 he co-founded Andean Organics, the first certified organic commercial vegetable business.


Craig graduated summa cum laude in Economics from Princeton and got his MBA in Agribusiness at Harvard. In 2012, he acquired 170 acres of degraded cattle lands in Baeza. Upon discovering that trees such as logma (an endemic relative to lucuma), poroton (protein-rich tree beans), motilon (Amazon cherry), tocte (Andean-Amazon walnut) and other  wild food plants were naturally abundant in the land and in the area, Craig decided to work on models to help restore the biome and provide a new, ecologically inclusive model for sustainable wild food production that protects at-risk animals that inhabit the cloud forest.

Upon seeing nature’s response, by 2020 the focus changed to give priority to understanding the forest recovery holistically, including ornithology (birds), herpetology (frogs), mammals, botany, mycelium (mushrooms), hydrology (water) and all the beautiful recovery possible in cloud forests, one of the most at-risk biomes on Earth.

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