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Treat yourself to a little piece of chocolate heaven

This Thursday, 7th July, is World Chocolate Day – a perfect excuse to tuck into that yummy bar of chocolate magic.  Rarely, however, when sitting down with a cuppa to enjoy our treat do we consider the cocoa farming industry – I mean, why would we?

Just to give a flavour though, across the world, around six million people depend on cocoa farming for their livelihoods; 90% of our global cocoa supply comes from small family farms. Cocoa is grown in the tropical environments of Africa, Asia and Latin America with Cote d’Ivoire being the largest producing country, generating 40% of the global supply! These areas are ideal for cocoa growth blessed with desirable hot, rainy and tropical climates hosting an array of lush vegetation to shade the cocoa trees.

Growing cocoa isn’t all that easy, however. Cocoa plants are very delicate and sensitive to the elements of wind, sunlight, pests and disease. Despite a rise in prices and cocoa demand, farmers gain very little from the profitable global cocoa trade for all their hard work in growing the crop. Many farmers remain in poverty as their income fails to keep up with rising production costs and household expenses. This has led to an aging population of farmers, with the average age of a cocoa farmer being 50, as few young people are encouraged to take over the trade.

This is where Fairtrade steps in. Fairtrade helps to keep the cocoa farming industry sustainable by guaranteeing a minimum price for cocoa supplies and providing premiums to invest into local communities so that farmers can provide a better future for themselves and their families.

Support World Chocolate day this year by indulging in Fairtrade produce. You can find Fairtrade chocolate from the following UK suppliers:

For more information you can check out the Fairtrade website.  

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