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Try REVERSE Trick-or-Treating This Halloween!

Guest post

Halloween should be fun, right? Unfortunately, a scary reality is that one of the biggest nights for the chocolate industry supports a system that relies on forced child labor on many West African cocoa farms. But you can do something to help stop such practices and still enjoy Halloween.

This October, families, organizations, and businesses across the U.S. can help children forced to work on West African cocoa farms by participating in the 5th annual Reverse Trick-or-Treating campaign. By handing out organic, Fair Trade chocolates from Equal Exchange with attached informational cards when they go trick-or-treating, participants can bring critically important attention to the thousands of children who are trafficked and forced to work in horrible conditions on West African cocoa farms.

This year’s Reverse Trick-or-Treating program marks the 10th anniversary of the September, 2001, signing of the Harkin-Engel Protocol that called for an end to the worst forms of child labor in the cocoa supply chains of the major chocolate companies. The campaign to raise awareness that there is a Fair Trade alternative to child labor was launched in 2007, two years after the deadline had passed for signatories to end the worst forms of child labor. Ten years after the protocol’s signing, most of its conditions have still not been met.

Equal Exchange knows there’s a better way to go and instead sources its Fair Trade and organic cocoa from farms in the Dominican Republic, Panama, Peru, and Ecuador. The vanilla from Madagascar and sugar from Paraguay for Equal Exchange’s chocolate are also certified Fair Trade and organic.

Contributed by: Kelsie Evans, Equal Exchange Chocolate Products Coordinator

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