For my birthday my niece gave me a chocolate flight from Divine Chocolates (divinechocolate.com). This gift was very special to me because, not only did this candy taste great, this candy was made using Fairtrade cocoa and sugar. Divine Chocolates fights the exploitation of farmers and workers in the cocoa fields. This is the only chocolate company that is co-owned by farmers. Their mission is to help end exploitation in the cocoa industry. Their business model reflects the belief that producers should earn a share of the profits they help to create. That’s why the a shareholder of Divine Chocolate is Kuapa Kokoo Farmers’ Union, a co-operative of 100,000 cocoa farmers in Ghana who grow the finest quality cocoa for our everyday and seasonal collections. The farmers’ ownership stake in Divine Chocolate is a first in the Fairtrade world. The farmers who supply Divine Chocolates with their cocoa are not only paid for their chocolate, they also receive a share of the profits of the company, which also enables them to invest in their own families, farms and communities.
As part of a larger initiative to plant 90,000 trees in Ghana, Divine Chocolate teamed up with Grow Ahead and planted 10,000 trees with Kuapa Kokoo, the world’s largest Fairtrade cocoa cooperative and co-owners of Divine. The goal of this agroforestry project is to reforest cocoa farms and farmlands to create microclimates, reducing the impact of climate change on cocoa farmers and the cocoa industry.
70% of the world’s cocoa supply comes from West Africa, but climate change is significantly impacting this delicate crop. Also, cocoa needs to grow in shade to be protected from sun and weather. Unfortunately the natural forest cover in Ghana and Cote D’Ivoire has declined by more than 70% in the past three decades. But the good news is that Divine matched $5,000 with $5,000 in donations they received and raised $10,000 to plant 10,000 trees, giving the environment a chance to recover on its own.
Divine Chocolates are committed to the empowerment of women. Of the 100,000 Kuapa Kokoo farmers who co-own the company, more than a third are women.
Divine Chocolates are not only a sweet treat, but knowing that they are working for a better world is tremendous. These would make great holiday gifts and stocking stuffers.
Thanks for stopping by,
“My hope is for kindness to become a currency bigger than money or fame.” -Chantal Kreviazuk