Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Ask Godiva what it is doing to fight child labor in cocoa

Take Action Now

Valentine's Day is a big deal for chocolate. So big of a deal, in fact, that Americans spend almost $2 billion on candy for Valentine's Day. Meanwhile, cocoa farmers in Cote d'Ivoire, one of the major producers of cocoa, on average earn $0.78 a day.

Not only is that not enough to buy a chocolate bar at the store, it's not even enough for a farmer and his family to get by.

This imbalance contributes to one of the darkest secrets of the chocolate industry: the fact that over 2 million children are still working in cocoa fields.

They're not just helping out on family farms. They're working dangerous jobs like spraying pesticides or wielding machetes.

Most major companies have shared detailed plans about what they are doing to address child labor in their supply chains. Most – but not all.

Tell Godiva you want to know what it is doing to fight child labor in cocoa.

Godiva has shared that it will source 100% sustainable cocoa by 2020. But it hasn't shared what it is doing to achieve this goal, how close it is to achieving its goal, or even what sustainable cocoa means. And it definitely has not shared what it is specifically doing to meaningfully address child labor.

So this Valentine's Day, we're asking you to put down that heart-shaped box of chocolates and stand up for child laborers and cocoa farmers. Join us in asking: Godiva, what are you doing to fight child labor in your supply chain?

Then share our video about child labor in chocolate to increase the pressure on Godiva.

- Caroline Chen, Social Justice Campaigns Manager, Green America

Dear Ms. Young-Scrivner,

As someone who enjoys eating chocolate and sharing it with those I love on special occasions, I was disappointed to learn that Godiva does not share specific plans, timelines, and programs to ensure that your supply of cocoa is fully sustainable and free of child labor by 2020.

Throughout West Africa, cocoa farmers and their families live in poverty. To be truly sustainable, Godiva must be able to trace where its cocoa is coming from down to the farm level, and under what conditions it was grown. I urge Godiva to ensure that all the farmers that produce your cocoa are lifted out of poverty.

Additionally, forced child labor is a major problem on cocoa farms in West Africa. I strongly urge your company to purchase 100% of your cocoa certified by a third-party as being free of child labor. Additionally, you should establish an independent, community-based child labor monitoring and remediation system for all the farms that supply your cocoa. This will assure your customers that you do not rely on the exploitation of children to produce your products.

Finally. as you make these commitments, I encourage you to share your progress with the public through a corporate responsibility report on your website that makes your progress on farmer income, child labor, and environmental protection fully transparent.

Thank you for your time and attention to this message. I look forward to learning more about what Godiva is doing to ensure that your chocolate is sustainable, and does not rely on child labor.

No comments:

Post a Comment