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Keep Child Labor Out of Your Kid’s Halloween Candy

When rated on human rights efforts in cocoa supply chains, a number of well-known brands did not receive passing grades.

Before deciding which Halloween candy to purchase, consumers should conusults the recently released Green America Chocolate Scorecard. It ranks major chocolate companies on their sustainability and human rights efforts in cocoa supply chains.

The three lowest graded companies Godiva (F) and Ferrero and Mondelez (both Ds) performed even worse than Lindt, Hershey (both C), Mars and Nestle (C+).

Chocolate maker Guittard received a B+ rating. Alter Eco, Divine, Endangered Species, Equal Exchange, Shaman, Theo Chocolate, and Tony’s Chocolonely were all given As.

It is estimated that over 2 million children are working in cocoa fields in West Africa. In addition, cocoa-growing has decimated forests in the Ivory Coast and Ghana. Companies were rated on the steps they are taking on child labor, deforestation, and whether they have meaningful programs to address farmer poverty.

This Halloween and every day, children should be able to enjoy candies that aren’t made by child laborers, and those child laborers should be enjoying their childhoods, rather than being forced to work in dangerous conditions,” said Charlotte Tate, labor justice manager at Green America, which provides the economic strategies, organizing power and practical tools for businesses and individuals to solve today’s social and environmental problems..

Tate added: “However, companies continue to make that a difficult task by not adequately addressing child labor in their supply chain. Big brands must do more to tackle these issues and buying ethically sourced chocolate is one way for consumers to put pressure on brands to change their practices.

The goal of the group's Green America Chocolate Scorecard to help consumers identify and purchase chocolate that is ethically made, so that they can help in the fight against child labor by supporting those brands making the biggest efforts.

“When bombarded with endless choices, it can be difficult to know which chocolate brands are having a positive impact on the world,” said Todd Larsen, executive co-director of Consumer and Corporate Engagement at Green America. “The aim of Green America’s scorecard is to help consumers feel confident about choosing chocolates that are ethically sourced with high-quality ingredients.”

The Green America Chocolate Scorecard provides a resource to consumers to help identify and purchase chocolate that is ethically made so that consumers can help in the fight against child labor through supporting those brands making the biggest efforts.

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