Chocolate Origins: Part 4 Our Guilty Pleasure

An Inconvenient Truth

Much like the carbon crisis affecting our earth, the realities of the Cocoa trade are inconvenient to our consumer culture. The competitive western markets force companies to compete for the lowest price, and the chocolate bar has become a cornerstone of Capitalist culture. Consumers want cheap chocolate bars, and after decades of chocolate bars being sold for only a buck or two, it's hard to change the status quo.

For many of us the chocolate trade atrocities happen hundreds or thousands of miles away from us, and that distance makes it easy to be apathetic.

Children often start working at Cocoa Plantations to help support their families. Children as young of the age of 5 have been found working for Cocoa Plantations. Dangerous working conditions await the workers of the Cocoa plantation such as:

  • Climbing tall trees to harvest Cocoa Pods
  • Exposure to toxic pesticides
  • Wielding machetes
  • Carrying dangerously heavy loads (100lbs or more)

Children working the Cocoa Plantation often have many scars from cutting open Cocoa Pods  or from beatings. Once involved in the Cocoa Trade, children will be systematically separated from their families, and moved around like a disposable workforce.

The absence of regulation, corporate greed, and the lack of responsibility by major chocolate companies has created a seemingly unbreakable system. Major human rights violations and child slavery will continue as long as its profitable.