Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Halloween Candy made by child labor

As another Halloween approaches and I think about buying chocolate as “treats” for children, here is something to consider: The chocolate you buy could be tainted with child labor.
Monday, September 19th marks the ten-year anniversary of the signing of the Harkin-Engel Protocol -- an agreement by the country’s largest chocolate companies to put an end to forced child labor on cocoa farms in West Africa by 2005.
Ten years later, not enough progress has been made.  Hundreds of thousands of children are still forced to work under abusive conditions for long hours on cocoa farms in West Africa, while others are victims of trafficking and forced labor. 
The largest chocolate manufacturer in the United States, Hershey, lags behind its competitors in eliminating these abuses from its cocoa supply chain. Some of Hershey’s competitors, including Mars and Nestle, have committed to start sourcing cocoa that is independently certified to comply with labor rights standards.
It is hard to believe Hershey -- the most iconic chocolate company in the USA is sourcing cocoa from plantations that use child labor.
This is a company who was started my Milton Hershey who along with his wife Catherine created the Milton Hershey School , The mission of the school is to nurture and educate children in social and financial need to lead fulfilling and productive lives.
Yet the Hershey company continues to knowingly buy cocoa from farms using child labor.
I will be looking for fair trade candy to hand out this year for Halloween so that means no Hershey candy bars in our pumpkin 


1 comment:

andieclark said...

Thanks for this information. My sister likes making candies at home so I better share this information to her. But her son can't eat too much sweets because he always complains of toothaches to his Bartlett dentists.