Phillip Minton M.D.

Archive for the ‘fair trade’ Category

Chocolate and Social Consciousness: It Can Be Complicated

In fair trade on May 27, 2012 at 3:55 pm

It is easy for us, consumers, to blame the government or big corporations for things we don’t like, and to demand that they “fix it”. The problem is, that sometimes these issues of moral and social concern are far more complex than we consumers realize. Because of that complexity, remedying the problems can take longer than we may wish. Nonetheless, informed consumers can make a difference.

Let’s take cocoa industry for instance. A large percentage of cocoa bean production occurs in two West African countries, Ghana and Ivory Coast. Unfortunately, the beans are produced in social and cultural environments that can harbor forced labor and child labor. We, western consumers, demand that these practices be stopped, and it appears that they are gradually being discontinued, albeit more slowly than we may wish. The core reason for such a slow change is the ingrained social and economic issues in both countries.

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Fairtrade Labeling in Chocolate Production: Is it the best answer to child slave labor and other concerns?

In fair trade on May 6, 2012 at 5:37 am

I recently read a Facebook post asking me to sign a petition demanding that Lindt take steps against child slave labor in the production of chocolate. It seemed incredible that such a large, old and respected producer of high end chocolate products would not have addressed this issue. This motivated me to research the topic.

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