Global Exchange’s Fair Trade Program has worked to promote Fair Trade, end child and forced labor and trafficking in the cocoa industry, as well as educate and empower children and adults to advocate for and purchase Fair Trade products. Because Fair Trade cocoa and coffee provide an economically viable way for producers to protect the forests that shade their crops, this campaign has played an equally important role in protecting forest ecosystems and biodiversity.
In 2006, we joined a coalition of organizations targeting Hershey’s, America’s chocolate icon, to “Raise the Bar” by ending child and forced labor in its cocoa supply chain and start sourcing Fair Trade certified cocoa. By transforming one company, we aim to transform the industry. We know that if this industry giant goes Fair Trade, other chocolate companies will follow.
And we’ve educated, inspired and engaged kids, the marketing targets of the chocolate industry, in the Fair Trade cocoa movement. We have trained the next generation of social justice and environmental leaders through our Sweet Smarts Chapters, and offered them opportunities to put new organizing skills into practice through national and holiday activities.