It was 2001 when the chocolate companies assured the US Government and global markets that they could self-regulate and solve the slavery of young boys being trafficked from neighbouring countries into the cocoa farms of West Africa. The Harkin-Engel Protocol stated that all cocoa sourced by the signatories would be certified cocoa by 2020.
It’s 2020, and not enough progress has resulted. The last report in West Africa estimated 2.2 million child labour victims. There is an urgency to call the chocolate companies and industry to Put It Together and make it happen.
Rick Scobey, President, World Cocoa Foundation - a peak body for the chocolate industry said in his New Year Blog for 2020: Increasing farmer income is central to ending child labour, usually defined as work that harms a child. The primary cause is poverty. Two thirds of the world’s cocoa is grown by 1.6 million farmers in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire. Most of these farmers are too poor to hire workers — so their children do this work.
There are three big problems with the cocoa sector that must be overcome by:
We invite you to: