Posts tagged ‘chocolate’
We just added some bundles of Divine chocolate to our online store.
It gives you the chance to sample no less than 8 (EIGHT!) different flavors from Divine. The bars of 3.5oz chocolate come in a wicker basket as standard, or you can upgrade to a beautiful baby bolga basket, also from Ghana.
Here’s a bit of background about Divine (courtesy of their website):
The story starts in 1879 when Tetteh Quarshie first brought cocoa to Ghana from Equatorial Guinea. Since then, Ghanaian cocoa has developed a global reputation for its quality and its taste. Today it is one of the country’s main exports. Ghana is the second largest exporter of cocoa in the world. Most of the cocoa is grown by small-scale family farmers on 4-5 acres of land. Cocoa farming is a precarious business. The trees are vulnerable to various diseases and pests and although chocolate is one of the world’s favorite treats, the cocoa price often dips below the level at which it pays enough for cocoa small-scale farmers to survive.
In the early 1990’s, the cocoa market in Ghana become partially liberalized, allowing for the formation of licensed buying companies to purchase cocoa beans from farmers and sell them to Cocoa Marketing Company that would continue to be the single exporter of Ghana cocoa. A number of farmers, including a visionary farmer representative on the Ghana Cocoa Board, Nana Frimpong Abrebrese, came to realize that they had the opportunity to organize farmers in an industry where their voices were not being heard and set up a licensed buying company that would be run by farmers and for their benefit. These farmers pooled resources to set up Kuapa Kokoo, a farmers’ co-op, which would trade its own cocoa, and thus manage the selling process more efficiently than the government cocoa agents. Kuapa Kokoo – which means good cocoa growers – has a mission to empower farmers in their efforts to gain a dignified livelihood, to increase women’s participation in all of Kuapa’s activities, and to develop environmentally friendly cultivation of cocoa.
Kuapa Kokoo quickly developed a reputation for being fair and honest. In Ghana, the cocoa scale and control of the scale is tremendously important. A cocoa farmer can easily be robbed by unscrupulous clerks that rigged the scales to cheat farmers out of the full value of their crop. Kuapa Kokoo put power over the scales in the hands of farmers by making sure that each village had its own scale and its own elected clerk or village recorder. Further, through its commitment to Fair Trade and sale of cocoa to the Fair Trade market, Kuapa Kokoo was able to return greater benefits to cocoa farmers. Its membership quickly grew. In 1997, at their annual general meeting, the farmers of Kuapa Kokoo voted to set up a chocolate company of their own in order to return even more benefits to cocoa farmers. And with investment from The Body Shop and Twin Trading, and support from Comic Relief and Christian Aid, Divine Chocolate was born.
Divine Chocolate is today a leading Fair Trade brand in the UK and a pioneer in the world of socially responsible enterprise. The success of Divine means that farmers have a secure source of Fair Trade income that continues to grow year on year. Kuapa Kokoo has invested its Fair Trade income in building schools, sinking wells for clean drinking water to villages, providing mobile medical clinics for farmers in remote growing regions, and fostering women’s income generation projects to help women earn additional income for their families when the cocoa season is over. The farmers’ ownership stake in Divine Chocolate means that Kuapa Kokoo has a meaningful input into decisions about how Divine is produced and sold. In addition, Kuapa Kokoo receives a share in the profits from their ownership shares and in 2007 celebrated the first distribution of dividends from Divine in the UK. To further its mission and further increase benefits for cocoa farmers, Divine Chocolate launched a US company to expand into $13 billion American market. In 2006, Divine Chocolate Inc opened in Washington DC to bring fantastic Fair Trade chocolate to US consumers. The farmers of Kuapa Kokoo own one-third of Divine Chocolate in the US.
We just took delivery of some copies of this excellent guide. Here’s what Dr Jones has to say about the guide on his website (www.betterworldshopper.com):
“The only comprehensive guide for socially and environmentally responsible consumers available, this book ranks every product on the shelf from A to F so you can quickly tell the “good guys” from the “bad guys” — turning your grocery list into a powerful tool to change the world. Representing over 15 years of distilled research, data is organized into the most common product categories including coffee, energy bars, computers, gasoline, clothing, banks, cars, water and more.
Also included is a summary of the essential information about particular product categories, profiles of the best and worst companies, practical buying tips and the most useful online resources available. Whether you believe in environmental sustainability, human rights, animal protection, community involvement or social justice, you’ll want this book.
Small enough [4″x6”] to fit in a back pocket or small purse and organized in a shopping-friendly format, The Better World Shopping Guide will help you change the world as you shop! For just 10 bucks, how can you NOT get one?”
the better world shopping guide is available now in our store in downtown Springfield, Missouri or online at www.globalfayre.com.
On scanning through, it’s great to see some of our suppliers mentioned, although in truth most of the producer groups that we buy from are too small to get a mention:
Chocolate – an “A+” goes to Equal Exchange and Divine amongst others, with an “A” going to Shaman.
Coffee – the only “A+” to Thanksgiving Coffee and an “A” to Equal Exchange
Olives and Pickles – the only “A+” goes to Canaan
Nuts – the only “A+” goes to Equal Exchange
Tea – an “A+” for Equal Exchange
We suddenly hit 80 degrees today – a sharp reminder that it’s time to take the chocolate off the online store for the summer.
It’s not that we don’t want people to buy Fair Trade chocolate of course – it’s just that the environmental cost of shipping chocolate in hot weather is crazy, and way out of proportion to the benefit to the cocoa growers.
So – if you have a yearning for Fair Trade chocolate and live too far away from Springfield, Missouri to come in to Global Fayre to buy it in person, here’s a couple of suggestions:
1. Check out your local Fair Trade /whole food / grocery store and see what they have to offer. If no local stores stock
Fair Trade chocolate – then ask them to get some!
2. If that doesn’t work, go to TransfairUsa and enter your city name and/or zip code, specify what it is you want to buy, and it will list local retailers stocking Fair Trade products.
3. Make a trip to Springfield! We’re open all year round, 7 days a week in the historic downtown area – surrounded by the coolest galleries. Check out the Springfield art scene here.
4. Abstein for the summer and order from Global Fayre’s online store in October
It was great to hear NPR run a story on Fair Trade this morning.
The discussion was pretty limited, focusing only on tea, coffee, chocolate and bananas, but every little piece of exposure helps!
You can hear the story here.