Yet another reason to buy ORGANIC

Hi everyone it’s Shanon G. Today I would like to talk about my lifelong love affair with chocolate. I don’t know anyone that dislikes chocolate. Since I can remember I have loved chocolate, the smell, the taste when it melts in your mouth, steaming hot chocolate on a cold day, yummy, and I don’t discriminate, I like it all- white chocolate, dark, or milk, it all tastes good to me! There is one word for it-delicious! (My personal favorite is Green & Black’s Organic 70% Dark Chocolate, just one little piece hits the spot when I am craving something sweet). Chocolate contains Phenylethylaminehis- a compound that may be responsible for some of the pleasurable feelings you get after eating chocolate. It releases natural feel-good chemicals called endorphins in your brain, the same chemicals that are released when you are falling in love!

Well you might start to feel a little differently when eating your delicious treat if you knew how your chocolate was being made. I myself was totally shocked to learn that slaves (sometimes children!) on the Ivory Coast are making it. Unbelievable right? Well UNICEF estimates that nearly a half-million children work on farms across Ivory Coast, which produces nearly 40% of the world’s supply of cocoa. The agency says hundreds of thousands of children, many of them trafficked across borders, are engaged in the worst forms of child labor.

There are a few things you can do to stop supporting companies that use slave labor to produce their chocolate:

#1 buy ORGANIC! Organic companies have fair trade labels- When a product carries the FAIR TRADE mark it means the producers and traders have met Fairtrade Standards. The standards are designed to address the imbalance of power in trading relationships, unstable markets and the injustices of conventional trade.

#2 sign the petition! Here is the site for signing the petition to end child slavery in producing chocolate. http://www.stopthetraffik.org/takeaction/chocolate/

#3 Spread the word! You would be surprised how many people have no idea this is going on. If we as consumers simply mention it on facebook or tell a friend and then stop buying products from companies that engage in child slavery, things can change!

#4 Be informed of the specific companies that engage in child slavery to make their chocolate. I was shocked to learn that there are some very well known companies on the list. Here is a link to specific companies and whether or not they use slave labor to produce chocolate http://www.betterworldshopper.com/chocolate_data.html

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