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This Easter, the chocolate industry cannot guarantee our chocolate is Traffik Free.
Nearly half the world's chocolate is made from cocoa grown in Côte d'Ivoire, West Africa.
The 2000 US State Department Human Rights report said "It is estimated that some 15,000 Malian children work on Ivorian cocoa and coffee plantations. Many are under 12 years-of-age, sold into indentured servitude for $140, and work 12-hour days for $135 to $189 per year."
They are trafficked into forced labour so we can eat chocolate.
"I will tell you how I lost my arm. I tried to escape, but I could not. They caught me and tied me to a papaya tree and they beat me and broke my arm. From here my life was ruined."
Anonymous. Personal Interview, Côte d'Ivoire. Dec. 2005. ILRF (International Labour Rights Fund)
A young boy called Victor trafficked from Mali said:
"Tell your children that they have bought something that I suffered to make. When they are eating chocolate they are eating my flesh."
We have the power to help Victor and the thousands of children like him.
Change your buying habits. By eating Fairtrade chocolate we can guarantee that no trafficked labour has been used in its production. Use the STOP THE TRAFFIK Good Chocolate Guide http://www.stopthetraffik.org/
to find out which chocolate is Traffik Free.
What do we want the chocolate companies to do? Give us a Traffik Free Guarantee on all their chocolate.
STOP THE TRAFFIK, is a global coalition of organisations working together to fight against people trafficking.
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[With thanks to msnoemi]
In Toronto a new shop has opened, which sells "horizontally traded" chocolate, which they say is even better than Fair Trade. You can also drink a cup of hot chocolate on location, it's delish. ChocoSol is located in the basement of that old church at 720 Bathurst and Lennox, where they share space with that Sprouts store.
ETA: Indian in 30-year 'bonded labour' for 40kg of rice