Cocoa Farming

Published by Chocolatier Jason Vishnefske on 3rd Sep 2022

Cocoa Farming


Many cocoa farms are a family endeavor in difficult places to live because of lack of infrastructure (running water, roads, electricity, machinery etc). As a result, the entire family is involved in farming from children up to parents much like the early American farmers. The new President of The Ivory Coast is working hard to end forced labor and I don't think any Western chocolate company would ever actually choose chocolate that was knowingly produced or grown by slaves (or at least I can't imagine it, but somebody is and I suspect it is low priced commodity chocolate companies that are knowingly buying this cacao or at least driving a market for this to happen). 

The amazing thing is: forced labor seems to be more prevalent then I ever imagined. I saw this show on shrimp fishing in Thailand and just heard a piece on NPR about electronics made in China. 

To make this world a better place we all need to work toward a common good. Ultimately I think the only way this can end is if the big companies - the giant multinational chocolate companies - for example, give up some of their profit to benefit the hard working farmer and the consumers start supporting the small chocolate companies that know their supply source (this could result in slightly more expensive chocolate or consumer goods but at what price are we ultimately really paying to save a few pennies?).

And, yes, our chocolates and cocoas are slave labor free and ethically traded (our brokers are the ones who confirm this for us - the guys actually in the field investigating).