September 21st, 2011
11:16 AM ET

Chocolate, cocoa industries' response

Ten years ago, The "Cocoa Protocol" was signed into law, aiming to put a stop to child labor in the cocoa industry. (Read more about what the Cocoa Protocol is) Today, many aid groups say some of the provisions have still not been met by businesses involved.

What does the chocolate and cocoa industry have to say? Individual companies released statements and an industry spokeswoman, Joanna Scott, talked to CNN's Max Foster about what progress has been made and successes the industry has seen.

Watch more in the video.

Topics: Business

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soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. Chango Lee

    Why single out coffee, diamonds, gold? How about all the tech gadgets? Minerals from mines, plastic from oil, all assembled by modern day slaves in Asia.

    September 21, 2011 at 8:16 pm | Reply
  2. john mcculloch

    Currently I am living in Thailand and visit many factories that produce cheap clothing and various articles for both the tourist and export markets.Some of the conditions these people work in are terrible by western standards.It is normal for whole families to work together in many instances. The bottom line however is they would starve without this work.The average unskilled worker here earns around 7000 baht a month...about $250 us dollars a month...teachers in the government system often earn less than 10,000 baht a month. the average rent paid by a family for very basic accommodation is around 1,000 to 2,000 baht a month. Western friends of mine have work permits to teach English and earn , if they are lucky 3500 baht a month. One should never equate western ideas and values with supposed slave labor tactics by big business. If they were to be given western standards of pay and conditions there would be no employers left and a mostly happy race of people would have to live by foraging for food.Not to mention most westerners would never be able to afford the things they import. For every boycott against these companies there will be some poor person on the end of the line who will be doing tough indeed.

    September 25, 2011 at 12:32 am | Reply
    • Jack

      Very good point, John M.
      It is about relativity. In some countries, not Thailand, 250$ can provide you a king's lifestyle!

      September 26, 2011 at 6:00 am | Reply
    • peter b metcalf

      Re: your statement that "most westerners would never be able to afford the things they import," is false indeed. How could you say such a thing? We can afford the imports, but our standard of living would be lowered. We would pay more and buy less. The reduction in exports combined with a higher wage would mean exploited people overseas have more to spend on the products they produce, or on necessities, and with a smaller export, the owners of production would have incentive to lower the working hours, equating to a higher wage, and/or sell their goods at prices the locals can afford. It would probably lower the standard of living of the owners of production as well as the execs of Walmart, K Mart, etc. Watch "The High Cost of Low Price" to see (among other things) that nothing good ever comes from bad or immoral acts or thinking. Never. People who exploit unscrupulous people to their advantage merely perpetuate the ill.

      March 28, 2014 at 12:11 am | Reply
  3. not my problem

    If it does not meet our basic human rights standards than it should not be sold here period. Your not going to change the mindset for export products sold here in the US unless it meets the core minimum values of human rights that we cherrish.

    By your standards than slavery is justifiable it is not for me.

    September 26, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Reply
  4. OnTheRoad

    In some cases you really have to look deeper and determine 'Is this Slavery' or is this just 'Doing what is necessary not to starve to death'! This article is talking about think happening in countries where the normal family has 5 or mor children when they can't afford to feed 1 child. The normal person earns maybe $1 a day. So, if a 6 year old child is out working and being fed instead of sitting at home starving, is that really slavery??

    September 26, 2011 at 2:48 pm | Reply
    • tlsinfo

      yes

      January 18, 2012 at 10:23 am | Reply
  5. sridrn

    Its interesting none of the articles mention any brand names that leverage slavery in the under-developed world.
    Fear of getting sued ? Honestly, the whole blog is worthless if it can't expose culprits.

    September 30, 2011 at 11:50 am | Reply
  6. Jozua .

    30 million slaves out of 7000 million world population equals 0.5%. How does that compare with figure for joblessness and criminals? Many searchers for social equality are `sweeties' searching for attention and could adjust facts to serve their own purposes.

    October 1, 2011 at 10:56 pm | Reply
  7. Ben Franklin

    Just google – Cargill slavery – to see America's part in slavery – Cargill is the same company that is killing millions of poor people by turning corn into ethanol and bioplastic.

    October 2, 2011 at 4:09 pm | Reply
  8. hallometsteven

    Nestlé and Fairtrade Foundation invite farmers to York to celebrate two years of Fairtrade certified Four-Finger KIT KAT. Farmers and Harriet Lamb, Executive Director, Fairtrade Foundation UK meet with Archbishop of York’s Young Leaders at Manor School on the 26th January.

    http://www.anglicancommunion.org/acns/digest/index.cfm/2012/1/30/Cocoa-Farmers-Guests-of-Honour-to-Celebrate-Kit-Kat-Fairtrade-Anniversary

    January 30, 2012 at 6:24 pm | Reply
  9. icon archive

    What can he mean?

    October 4, 2012 at 9:26 pm | Reply
  10. shadia

    STOP CHILD LABOR AND SLAVERY IN ALL COUNTRIES PLEASE CHOCOLATE IS HURTING US. 😈😈😈😈😈😣😣😢😢😢😢

    March 29, 2016 at 2:12 pm | Reply
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    STOP CHILD LABOR AND SLAVERY IN ALL COUNTRIES PLEASE CHOCOLATE IS HURTING US. 😈😈😈😈😈😣😣😢😢😢😢 PLEASE people believe in others and you

    March 29, 2016 at 2:13 pm | Reply
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