The Chocolate Life

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Giving Back

It's not enough to hand off to NGOs (non-governmental organizations) the responsibility to redress issues of ethical trade. The purpose of this group is to discuss ways to improve the quality of life of farm families and farm communities worldwide.

Location: Worldwide
Members: 103
Latest Activity: Nov 30

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Redefining Good Food: Tasty. Authentic. Responsible.

The Good Food Awards celebrate the kind of food we all want to eat: tasty, authentic and responsibly produced. We grant awards to outstanding American food producers and the farmers who provide their ingredients. We host an annual Awards Ceremony and Marketplace at the iconic Ferry Building in San Francisco to honor the Good Food Award recipients who push their industries towards craftsmanship and sustainability while enhancing our agricultural landscape and building strong communities.

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Discussion Forum

Non-GMO Sweetner sources / opinions

Started by Susie Wyshak. Last reply by beth campbell Apr 10, 2013. 1 Reply

Fair Trade

Started by Solis Lujan Apr 7, 2011. 0 Replies

Comment Wall


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Comment by Duffy Sheardown on January 25, 2010 at 11:45am
Hi Molly,
I'm not entirely sure. I submitted two draft bar wrapper designs to the local Trading Standards people and they checked with Fairtrade in the UK (where I am) who said that I can't use the description in the ingredients list. The Organic people say I can use that term. The sugar I have bought and will use is both Fairtrade and organic so I'm not claiming anything I can't back up with invoices, delivery notes and production records.
I sent an e-mail to my contact at Fairtrade in the UK today so I shall see if I get a reply.
It's in pretty small tye so not a huge attention-getting thing at all.

Comment by Molly Drexelius on January 25, 2010 at 11:32am
Why have you been told not to use the term "Fairtrade sugar"?

No, that doesn't make sense...
Comment by Duffy Sheardown on January 24, 2010 at 6:01pm
Just about to launch a new chocolate bar. The beans are not Fairtrade or organic although I am told the farmers get above average price for the beans - I need to check that out for myself at some point. I have bought Fairtrade/organic sugar and have been told that I can use the term "organic sugar" on the ingredients list I cannot use the term "Fairtrade sugar". So where is the incentive to use it? I pay the premium but can't tell anyone I'm trying to do a little bit? Unless I submit the recipe, go through the process, pay the Fairtrae people and use their logo - if I do that I can label the entire bar "Fairtrade" because more than 20% of the ingredients (that is - the sugar) is Fairtrade. Sorry, I just don't think this makes a great deal of sense.
Comment by Ben Ripple on December 31, 2009 at 12:55am
Here is a thought....So many "social" systems out there that start with the concept of needing to pay a premium (either to receive a marketing right eg Fair Trade or to build your own companies vision of sustainable trade (as Donald Tyler mentions below)...But here's the rub; what's a viable living wage for a cacao farmer? Indonesian farmers by statistics currently receive the highest percentage of $ from the in-country value chain...but the actual farmer revenues are usually losses... So if we give a premium to a farmer making a loss...does it help? How does one determine what the premium is? how it should be disseminated and whether or not cacao farmers should be growing cacao in the first place ( blasphemy i know but consider it region by region)....
Comment by Craig on August 5, 2009 at 11:15pm
G'day All
Early this year I was cruising the net looking for the cocoa hotspots when I discovered this what looked liked small but deeply commitedd NGO doing great things in the Cocoa Foelds of Ghana. I tried looking again and seem to have no luck finding them as would like to help out. Does anyone here have any idea who they are and could point me in the right direction.
Comment by Volker Lehmann on March 27, 2009 at 6:04pm
Dear friends:
I am involved in building up a new "fair trade" concept with Original Beans benefiting already through funds that we channel through to smallholders for safeguarding Chocolatales (natural cacao stands) in the Itenez province of Beni, Bolivia. I copy you a link to a blog describing the concept and I would be glad to answer any questions which might come up to further discuss this important issue. .

Saludos, Volker
Comment by Emily on January 31, 2009 at 9:53pm

What are your thoughts on organizations like Has anyone given a microloan to an aspiring chocolatier?
Comment by Langdon Stevenson on January 5, 2009 at 8:54pm
Donald, I like the idea of giving back a portion of profit to growers. This is something that Shawn Askinosie does with the growers that he works with. It is also one of the underling principals of a new grower assistance program being run in the South Pacific by a friend of ours.

One of the really good aspects of this approach is that it doesn't over inflate the price of the finished product. A small extra margin on the grower's price can translate into a significant increase in price of retail chocolate. Where as an extra 10% margin at retail could conceivably double the grower's return.

Great aim, hope you get there. Love to hear more about your plans to buy direct as they develop.
Comment by Donald Tyler on January 5, 2009 at 4:48pm
We're looking to engage our farming partners in a "fair-trade Plus" program where not only do we pay sustainable prices for the ingredients we also allocate a portion of our profits back to the farmers. We are not purchasing direct currently, we're not at a point growth-wise for this to be an option however it's where we are heading.
Comment by Holly & Paul Stabin on May 18, 2008 at 3:35pm
The Chocolate Lovers Travel Club is built around a mission of "giving back" as every journey that we take improves the conditions of families around the world.

You see, we donate 10% of our net travel proceeds for just for that purpose.

For example, Clay is meeting us in Belize this week - near the birth place of cacoa. We'll be learning about the process of harvesting pods on cacao plantations, fermenting, winnowing, roasting, conching and of course, tasting and comparing the end products.

CLTC members are able to travel around the world with Clay Gordon (and sometimes with additional tour leaders - like when we go to Hawaii this fall for both chocolate and coffee) to receive a quality education in all aspects of the cacoa/chocolate industry. It's also a lot of fun and lifetime friendships are created.

CLTC members headed to Belize this week, have already made a generous donation to Hope Unlimited - a worldwide organization that vastly improves the lives of children and their families.

This is why we are encouraging all of you to join us in Nashville this coming Labor Day Weekend - because we'll not only enjoy a great time with Clay at the competition, but we'll also be making a permanent difference around the planet.

You know, so many people think nothing of jumping on a plane for a 3, 4 or 5 star vacation and spending money only on themselves. CLTC offers a unique opportunity for it's members to enjoy a superb vacation or mini-vacation, and to give back at the same time.

All CLTC memberships are complimentary.

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