I’m a big fan of being a responsible consumer. I make sure the coffee I get is fair trade, as it’s the 2nd largest commodity traded in the world to oil, and most of the time, the growers are being ripped off by 2 or 3 major companies that control the commodity at that level, before the beans are on sold to individual roasters and brands that we are familiar on our supermarket shelves. Fairtrade skips this monopoly, and means the growers can determine the price of their bean, rather than the major companies telling them what that price is.
Cocoa is another highly traded commodity which we take for granted in the west. This move by Cadbury is a really good start, and I hope Cadbury NZ will do something similar in the not too distant future. It will definitely influence how I purchase my chocolate.
“One of New Zealand’s biggest-selling chocolate manufacturers is planning to switch to the ethical standard Fairtrade.
Cadbury’s flagship company, which sells 100 million bars a year in Britain and Ireland, announced it will source its cocoa from Fairtrade farmers in Ghana, the biggest brand of its kind to make the move.
A spokesman for Cadbury Australia and New Zealand said the company was also looking at going Fairtrade.
“Cadbury has been working with the Fairtrade Foundation and its international network for a number of years to prepare for Cadbury Dairy Milk’s Fairtrade certification,” said a spokesman.
“We look forward to expanding the discussion among other Cadbury brand teams and markets such as New Zealand.”
The Fairtrade mark was set up as a way of guaranteeing developing world farmers a bigger share of the money generated from products using their raw materials.
Some 7.5 million people, including farmers, workers and their families, benefit from products displaying the Fairtrade symbol.
“Farmers are saying that it’s impossible to make ends meet,” said Fairtrade’s head, Harriet Lamb. “People don’t see cocoa as a future. They don’t get enough cash from cocoa so there’s not enough investment.”
The new project is designed to create a “virtuous circle” by putting a floor on the price and offering a premium for higher-quality beans.
“With more income, farmers invest to improve quality and productivity,” Ms Lamb added. “Then they start to spread the benefits and you see thriving markets appearing.”
Forty thousand of Ghana’s 700,000 cocoa farmers will benefit from the first phase of the Cadbury venture, tripling the country’s Fairtrade cocoa production.
- INDEPENDENT, STAFF REPORTER”