US Uncut published a handy guide to make us aware and to help avoid buying chocolate products produced by child slaves. More of these products are available in the Netherlands so we want to spread the word here as well. Mars, Nestle, Godiva, Kraft, so tempting. But….
We spend an incredible big amount on chocolate and eat kilos of chocolate a year. Here is al ist to help you to avoid to choose the ones made by child slavery.
Last September in the States, a lawsuit was filed against eight companies – including Hershey, Mars, and Nestle – alleging that the companies were duping consumers into “unwittingly” funding the child slave labor trade in West Africa, home to two-thirds of the world’s cacao beans.
Worker ages range from 11-16 (sometimes younger). They are trapped in isolated farms, where they work 80 to 100 hours a week. The film Slavery: A Global Investigation spoke with freed children who reported that they were often beaten with fists and belts and whips.
“The beatings were a part of my life,” Aly Diabate, a freed slave, told reporters. “Anytime they loaded you with bags (of cocoa beans) and you fell while carrying them, nobody helped you. Instead they beat you and beat you until you picked it up again.”
Seven chocolate companies that benefit from child slave labor
Legislation nearly passed in 2001 in which the FDA would implement “slave free” labeling on the packaging. Before the legislation made it to a vote, the chocolate industry – including Nestle, Hershey, and Mars – used its corporate money to stop it by “promising” to self-regulate and end child slavery in their businesses by 2005. This deadline has repeatedly been pushed back, with the current goal now at 2020.
Meanwhile, the number of children working in the cocoa industry has increased by 51 percent from 2009 to 2014.
As one freed boy put it: “They enjoy something I suffered to make; I worked hard for them but saw no benefit. They are eating my flesh.”
More socially conscious chocolate companies that avoid suffering of child labour
Here is a list of more socially conscious companies who have made a point to avoid profiting off the suffering of child labor:
Green and Black’s
L.A. Burdick Chocolates
Denman Island Chocolate
Newman’s Own Organics
Kailua Candy Company
Omanhene Cocoa Bean Company
Rapunzel Pure Organics
The Endangered Species Chocolate Company
And we add to the US Uncut list of fair brands: the Dutch ony’s Chocolonely. Read also our article “Tony’s Chocolonely, fair chocolate brand if you want to go nuts“.
[Source: US Uncut]
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