Chocolate Travels

Halfway around the World and This

When I was in New Zealand, I ran into this box of Burlingame-manufactured chocolate while at a tiny local chocolate factory in Blenheim. After I left New Zealand, I brought about a metric ton of local chocolates and sweets with me. Whenever I go to Europe, I buy Lindt and Cadbury and never look back. When my friends from other places visit America, they laugh at Hershey’s and Nestle chocolate, but they eat it anyway. Chocolate transcends cultures and generations and geographic boundaries.

But I do wonder what sort of environmental repurcussions chocolate production has. Even though many chocolate companies swear that they buy cacao beans from small, family farms in South America, there still exists many factory farms there as well. Someone must be buying that. On those farms, they use forced labor to produce heavily fertilized cacao beans. Nestle has been one of the companies accused of using these sources.

So I suggest that no matter where you are in the world, don’t just buy a chocolate bar because it’s cheap. Pick a brand you’ve researched and trust. My favorites are Guittard, Green & Black’s, and Whittaker’s (though I wish you luck finding that anywhere outside of Oceania).

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