Diamondstone to talk about the spice trade in WWAC program

BRATTLEBORO — Windham World Affairs Council presents Ian Diamondstone in a free talk, “Building Alliances: 20 Years of Tales From the Spice Trade,” on Thursday, Nov. 11, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at 118 Elliot, 118 Elliot St.

Featuring Mexican vanilla, Indonesian turmeric, and Guatemalan cardamom, this talk will give listeners a chance to taste, smell, and experience the complex world of small farmers and global trade.

You will learn why vanilla prices have skyrocketed since 2020, how the turmeric craze affects farmers halfway around the world, and how new livelihoods are being created for Guatemala's new growers. You will also enjoy free spice samples to bring the stories to life.

Diamondstone, raised in Brattleboro, graduated from Brattleboro Union High School and attended the University of Vermont, where he earned a degree in Latino studies. Originally planning to be a Spanish teacher, Diamondstone found he had a talent for sales, working first at Humane Trophies and then ForestTrade.

His company, New Forest Organics (, works largely with micro-producers in Guatemala, Indonesia, and Mexico.

New Forest's mission is to “serve as an environmentally and socially responsible international business that directly supports sustainable agriculture, natural resource conservation, and socioeconomic development.”

“With this company,” says Diamondstone, “I came full circle with my Spanish studies. I now speak Spanish all the time - something I thought I never would do.”

Admission is free, but a donation of $5 is suggested, and proceeds from wine and cider sales will help small spice farmers.

Chairs will be set up to encourage proper social distancing. Masks are required.

For information, email [email protected].

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