As a chocoholic, with a heavy heart I say good-bye to two of my longtime staple foods: Reeses peanut butter cups and Whoppers...both produced by Hersheys. The great American chocolate bar and giant among U.S. candymakers sources cocoa through supply chains exploiting the worst forms of child labor, according to Tulane University. I thought YOU deserve to know, so YOU can make informed buying decisions.
Since 2006, under contract with the US Department of Labor, Tulane has monitored industry progress in implementing Harkin-Engel protocol to produce Fair Trade Certified chocolate. Nestle and Mars are upgrading policies and procedures, making steady progress to ensure the integrity of their supply chain. Hershey's REFUSES. Much of the worlds chocolate is sourced from the Ivory Coast where it is likely child slaves were involved. These kids don't go to school or play with their friends. They are purchased by slavemasters who program them to believe they work for their keep. Not "room and board" as we would think...they are kept in horrific living conditions, working 12-14 hours a day then left to beg for food. No such thing as a restful night's sleep, no medical care. Nobody cares or advocates for these children.
Before becoming aware, I patronized Hershey's and the exploitation of these precious children and it's left a bitter taste in my mouth. Today I ask you to join me in choosing alternative chocolate products, sending a powerful message with your pocketbook. For those of us in the U.S. on modest budgets, look for products by Mars or Nestle. Another of my longtime favorites (now replacing Reeses peanut butter cups and Whoppers) is M & M's, made by Mars, using fair trade certified chocolate.
The food/fuel we take into our bodies is energetically colored by its processing. I urge readers to consider choosing fair trade certified cocoa and other food products to nurture a sweeter spirit within. For the ultimate chocolate experience, enjoy DIVINE chocolate, now available in the U.S. At http://www.divine.com/ you will discover what makes their chocolate divine! While it may not be your everyday staple food/chocolate product, I find the indulgence unmistakenly and simply DIVINE.
Some say "We are what we eat". Like a negative experience, it can make you bitter or it can make you better...and YOU deserve the best! Join me in fueling yourself with certified chocolate...good riddens Reeses.