Corporate Social Responsibility: The World of Chocolate

Corporate social responsibility means that companies integrate social and environmental issues into their business operations and in their communication with their stockholders. The JustChocolate chocolate company, unlike every existing chocolate manufacturer in the world will show corporate social responsibility to employees, consumers, stockholders, the country, the environment, and the world.

One aspect of corporate social responsibility is the chocolate manufacturer’s responsibility to it’s employees. One problem with traditional chocolate manufacturers and its corporate social responsibility to its employees is slavery.

Slavery has been a big problem in the chocolate industry for years, and is a rapidly growing problem even today. One of the reasons slavery is such a big problem in the chocolate industry is because of poverty among chocolate manufacturers. Most chocolate manufacturers are located in the Third World, in poverty stricken areas such as Cote D’ivoire. Poverty among the cacao growers leads to fewer workers, as there is not money to pay the workers’ salaries. But the workers are desperately needed, therefore leading to the enslavement of both children and adults.

childlabor image 1Taken from flickr.com (5*)

Child laborers are a good work source for poverty stricken cacao farms, because they have many benefits that adult slaves do not. One of these benefits is that the children are small, so they can fit into small spaces, and have an easy time climbing trees in order to get the cacao pods off of the higher branches. Another reason child laborers are used is because they are easier to fool into slavery than adults, and also because they cost less to feed and care for.

Many think the solution to child labor and modern day slavery is to stop buying from these farms, but this will only worsen the problem, and create an even bigger poverty stricken area. The reason these poverty stricken cacao farms are enslaving children and adults in the first place is due to poverty, and not buying from them will lower their income (which is already well below the poverty line) even more, necessitating more slavery.

The JustChocolate chocolate company puts an end to slavery in our chocolate by only buying and supporting slave free farms, and when the other farms see that they will only gain our support if they let go of their slaves, they will begin to stop using slaves, and instead rely on our money.

 

Another aspect of corporate social responsibility is the responsibility to the consumers. One problem with traditional chocolate manufacturers by way of their consumers is diet and health.

Although a little bit of chocolate is thought to be healthy for you, (2* “Epidemiological studies indicate that cocoa has a cardioprotective effect by improving endothelial function and decreasing platelet aggregation and blood pressure.” – Watson et al) the over-consumption of chocolate is a leading factor in obesity rates today. This is partially due to sugar being one of the main ingredients in the chocolate we eat today, but is also due to the large amounts of both sugar and chocolate the average American consumes today. The average American eats over 152 pounds of sugar a year (3*), and around 12 pounds of chocolate annually, which is .  (4* in 2012, the average American ate 12 pounds of chocolate)

5pound chocolate image 2(6*)

 

Another problem that accompanies chocolate consumption is allergies. Four percent of adults, and 8% of children in the U.S have a food allergy, (1*) and some of the most common of these food allergies are ingredients used in chocolate, such as milk, peanuts and tree-nuts. Even non-allergenic chocolate sometimes has common allergens, mostly due to unhygienic chocolate manufacturing practices.

Hygiene is a common unsolved problem in chocolate manufacturing, mostly because the chocolate manufacturing countries are located in the third world. Cacao beans are often mixed in with foreign objects, such as metals. The process of cacao manufacturing is also often unsterile and unhygienic. The pods are harvested from the cacao trees, and then split open to reveal the cacao beans, covered in a sticky white pulp; these beans are then fermented and dried, and later sent to our company in large sacks. At our company, the beans are sorted by hand, while at traditional chocolate companies, the beans are sorted by machines, which are not always so accurate. Our chocolate company picks out the best beans, and then roasts them and de-shells them. These beans are then ground in our grinders, which like the rest of our machinery, is cleaned and sterilized after every use. After being ground, the beans are pressed in a hydraulic press, which then creates a press cake; and finally, the ground beans are conched.

The JustChocolate company has separate facilities, one for regular chocolates, one for tree nut-free chocolate, one for peanut-free chocolate, and one for milk-free chocolate. This helps ensure that no allergens get mixed into the chocolate, but at the same time lets people around the world enjoy a tasty, treat, either allergen free or not.

Our chocolate company also sorts the beans by hand, and only gets the cacao beans from slave-free farmers who follow their hygiene rules. These farms have regular checkups to ensure that they are complying with the hygiene terms.

To ensure the health of our consumers, our chocolate company sells small individual chocolates of different kinds for more money. This gives our consumers the treat they deserve, without the obesity and other health issues.

chocolatebox image 3The small chocolate boxes JustChocolate will use

 

Another part of corporate social responsibility is the responsibility to the stockholders. One problem with traditional chocolate manufacturers by way of their stockholders is ethicalness.

When stockholders buy a chocolate company’s stock, they plan to own a part of a chocolate company, not a slave company, but instead they are supporting slavery. Chocolate manufacturers are lying to their stockholders, and further promoting the slave industry. However, more importantly the stockholders company could be getting their ingredients from undemocratic countries.

Our chocolate manufacturing company gives its stockholders all the information they want, and even brings our stockholders on a tour of where they get their cacao beans. Our chocolate company ensures that no slavery has happened along the manufacturing line of our chocolate, and only receives cacao beans from democratic countries, and from countries that treat women and children properly.

 

Another aspect of corporate social responsibility is the responsibility to the U.S. One problem with traditional chocolate manufacturers by way of their country is bad health, bad PR, and setting a bad example/precedent.

Obesity rates are high and on the rise, and the cost of obesity and other health issues stemming from chocolate over consumption are rapidly growing. The money spent on health issues surrounding food is money not spent on solving other urgent national issues.

Besides affecting the country’s  health and insurance costs, buying chocolate from enslaved farms is also draining the countries good PR, and the country needs to set a good precedent. If the country is buying chocolate from child labor and slavery farms, then the country is supporting slavery.

Our chocolate company only makes chocolate from slave-free cacao farms, therefore setting a good example for the rest of the world. Our chocolate company does its best to keep obesity rates low, and therefore have less of a problem with health and insurance cost by selling small fancy chocolates for larger amounts of money, encouraging consumers to give themselves one treat that is perfect, rather than wasting the same amount of money on many more treats that are not as good, and fattening.

 

Yet another aspect of corporate social responsibility is the responsibility of the company to the environment. One problem with traditional chocolate manufacturers is pollution.

Traditional chocolate manufacturers use high energy/electricity machinery which is harmful to the environment. Some of these include the hydraulic press, the conche, the temper, and the mixer, among others.

Although it seems like traditional chocolate manufacturers are all bad, there is one thing about them that is good, and that is that it is beneficial to the cacao trees to have other trees, such as banana and avocado grow next to them. This ultimately helps both the environment and the natives in those countries.

Our chocolate company would provide the same benefits, but without the disadvantages that accompany traditional chocolate manufacturers.  Instead of using high energy machinery to produce our chocolate, we will use windmills, watermills, and solar panels to power our machinery. Our company takes nature, and turns it into a treat we will all enjoy, without ruining the world.

SONY DSC

(*7)

 

The JustChocolate company, unlike every existing chocolate manufacturer in the world will show corporate social responsibility to employees, consumers, stockholders, the country, the environment, and the world.  JustChocolate chocolate company does this by only using cacao from slave-free farms, therefore not promoting the slavery industry freely promoted by traditional chocolate manufacturers. Our chocolate company ensures that the consumers get the healthiest chocolate, and even provides separate facilities to ensure that no unknown allergens get inside our chocolate, and we only get our cacao beans from farms that follow our protocols. We’re responsible to our stockholders by ensuring that our company only gets its cacao beans from slave-free farms only located in democratic countries that treat women and children properly. Our chocolate company is responsible to the U.S because we set a good precedent by only buying and supporting slave-free farms, and farms that follow our hygiene protocol. And finally, JustChocolate chocolate company shows corporate social responsibility to the environment and the world by using natural resources, such as windmills, watermills, and solar panels to power our machinery, therefore not polluting, but at the same time producing a luxurious treat.

 

 

 

Sources cited:

  1. p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2015. <http%3A%2F%2Fwww.foodallergy.org%2Fdocument.doc%3Fid%3D194>
  2. “2015.04.15 AAAS E119 Lecture 11: Health, Nutrition, and the Politics of Food.” N.p., n.d. Web. 11 May 2015.
  3. “2015.02.25 AAAS E119 Lecture 5: Popular Sweet Tooths and Scandal.” N.p., n.d. Web. 11 May 2015.
  4. “Interactive Map: Top 20 Chocolate Consuming Nations of 2012.” N.p., 30 July 2013. Web. 11 May 2015.
  5. Child labor in Africa. Digital image. N.p., 4 June 2007. Web. 11 May 2015.
  6. Giant Hershey’s Chocolate Bar [5-Pound]. Digital image. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 May 2015.
  7. p., 18 June 2012. Web. 12 May 2015. <http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:BANGUI_WINDMILL,ILOCOS_NORTE_2.jpg&gt;.

 

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