I finally got the chance to view the documentary “The Dark Side of Chocolate.”

This is one way that my life is different than it was before.  I used to eat chocolate without thinking about it.  Now there are only a couple of brands that produce chocolate products that I can trust.  Most companies, regardless of any signed documents specifying otherwise, continue to purchase cocoa from farms that use child slaves.

70% of the world’s chocolate is farmed by child slaves.

You can go to this site and look up places to watch the documentary for free.  I started with the idea that I’d write down all the important information and put it on the blog so those laziest/busiest of you would still get the information, but the truth is that you really just need to see it for yourself.  It’s not the best documentary I’ve ever seen, but the message is strong.  And it’s a message coming straight from the top offices of all of the largest chocolat producers in the world (Nestle, Mars, Kraft, Cargill, ADM, and Barry Callebaut to name a few): We will continue to allow children to be kidnapped, trafficked, and enslaved in cocoa farms as long as consumers continue to buy our product.

No, it isn’t a direct quote, but that’s exactly what I understand their position to be.  The people at the top say there is no child slavery.  When they are shown facts proving that there is, they say it is rare.  When they are shown that it isn’t, they say it’s not their problem – they don’t own the farms, so they can’t do anything about it.  And that’s bullshit, because when it comes to money, their decisions to hold farms responsible are the only ones that matter.  If they know that it’s happening and tell the farms they are going to check up and make sure that it stops and won’t buy the cocoa if they find out it’s happening, it WOULD stop.

But why put that much effort into it?

You’re going to keep buying the chocolate anyway.