South China Morning Post
10 December 2014
Brooke Zheng (LLMHR student)
Legions of chocolate consumers should exert pressure on producers to stop the exploitation of child farm workers
At this time of year especially, it's worth stopping to consider how your gift of chocolate is made. For all the pleasure the eating of this food brings, its production often means a life of misery for the children in West Africa who harvest the cocoa beans - an essential ingredient - in hazardous conditions.While cocoa is consumed mainly by people in developed countries, some 70 per cent of it is produced in Africa. And the world wants more: recently, the world's biggest chocolate companies warned of a chocolate deficit by 2020. With increasing demand for chocolate, more children will be pushed into the labour force on cocoa farms. According to a 2011 report, some 1.8 million children, aged from five to 17, were working on cocoa farms in Ivory Coast and Ghana. Many are forced to work long hours, applying chemicals without protective equipment. Their rights to education are also largely denied; around 40 per cent of the working children on Ivorian cocoa farms were not enrolled in school... Click here to read the full article. The article was based on work done in Farzana Aslam's Business and Human Rights course.