Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Eat only organic, RFA and/or fair trade chocolate (Day 33)

Hi, my name is Eco Mama, and I'm a chocoholic. 

I love the stuff.  I really think it should be one of the four major food groups.  Give me a choice of a fruity option or a chocolate option and chocolate wins hands down every time.

I like all kinds of chocolate, but I'm especially fond of dark chocolate.  I keep a small stash in my coffee cupboard, for those days when I need a quick fix (which is most days!) 

Chocolate, however, has a dark side.  Farming conditions are not great, and small farm operators are exploited by large corporations.   Thousands of acres of rain forest are cut down, to make way for chocolate plantations. 

I've been feeling a bit guilt lately about the impact my chocolate habit has on the environment, so this eco-challenge was the excuse I needed to justify spending extra money on my treats to ensure that my chocolate is at the minimum, fair trade or Rain Forest Alliance certified.

TransFair Canada's website details some of the more troubling aspects of the cocoa industry.  (http://transfair.ca/en/products/cocoa)  I urge everyone to check out TransFair Canada's website, as it explains better than I ever could, about how fair trade benefits everyone.

Rain Forest Alliance also sponsors and supports shade-grown agriculture (http://www.rainforest-alliance.org/).  I already used RFA certified coffee, but wasn't sure if cocoa was available.   RFA does certify cocoa among other crops.  By supporting shade-grown agriculture, vital rain forests are saved and pesticide and chemical use is lowered.

Of course, the benefits of organic agriculture to our health and the environment are obvious.

I bought my first organic, fair trade chocolate on the weekend.  The store brand I bought wasn't as good as Lindt (what is, really?), but delicious enough to satisfy my sweet tooth.  

I can't wait to experiment with the other brands out there.  Any favorites, readers?


  1. cadbury has put out a fair trade chocolate bar...

    it wasnt as good as the JustUs but it'll do just to get the message out...

    this past easter with 4 kids we had to "manage" our fairtrade Easter with fairtrade maccaroon cookies small enough to fit in plastic colored eggs to hide...

    i also melt down a choclate bar each and put it into a bunny mold...

    maybe this next year cadbury will have a whole fairtrade line and my mom wont exhaust herself rolling her eyes at me... and my antics :)

  2. hi jen keep up the good work.
    i found this in google, now it has nothing to do about chocolate but just to let you know the word is out about your great blog. inspiring and great writing. keep it up



  3. Thanks Debra-Dawn - I'll have to look for the Cadbury line in the stores.

    PH - thanks for the info - isn't it exciting that Vanessa referenced me on her blog. Thanks Vanessa! :)

  4. Hello Eco Mama!

    Here are some website to investigate :


    And this site where they compare prices and {french brand}\http://www.leguide.com/sb/leguide/recherche/str_MotCle/Chocolat+biologique/org/3/t/1/5030103.htm

    Keep up the great work you are doing!!!


  5. Thanks, Lila! I'll definitely check out these sites.

  6. Hey Eco Mama and friends,

    As you know Cadbury Dairy Milk is now Fair Trade Certified in Canada.

    Cadbury is also offering Canadians the chance to win a trip to Ghana to see firsthand what life is like in a fair trade cocoa farm and community.

    Follow our Fair Trade activity and get the deatails on the contest
    Facebook www(dot)facebook(dot)com/cadburydairymilk
    and Twitter @dairymilkcanada

    Enjoy your chocolate!


  7. Thanks, Michelle! I will check out your contest details, for sure.