Once again Europe is paving the ethical way for the world to follow, showing that profit and fair trade can coexist even in the biggest of companies.
It won’t be in time for this Easter, but by the end of this summer 100% of all Cadbury chocolate products will use fair trade cocoa only. At least, if you live in the UK or Ireland. Those cute little chocolate eggs filled with that sugary, creamy center will only be sweeter when the chocolate shell comes from cocoa beans raised on fair trade cooperative farms in Ghana, West Africa. But not yet for us in the States.
In the US, Cadbury branded products are made by chocolate giant Hershey’s. Hershey’s is not exactly known for ethical cocoa trading practices. In fact, they have been criticized by Co-op America for buying cocoa from farms using child or slave labor.
Still Cadbury’s move in Europe is huge for a few very important reasons:
- It shows fair trade practices can still result in profit.
- The move demonstrates that consumer pressure on big corporations to act ethically works.
- Fair trade cocoa exports from Ghana will triple as a result of this switch.
- Cocoa from Ghana is considered some of the best in the world, so flavor and quality will only improve.
Cadbury is the largest chocolate company in the UK so their example will certainly be watched closely by our biggest chocolate manufacturers, Hershey’s and MandM/Mars. In the meantime, I’ll be continuing to enjoy my favorite fair trade chocolates like Theo, Divine, Dagoba and Equal Exchange. Anyone know where I can get my hands on Cadbury creme eggs made in England?