Can Chocolate Help Make Poverty History
Chocolate is wonderful. Is there really nothing that chocolate cannot do? Honestly, take a moment to think about it. Can you imagine any time in your life when chocolate hasn’t made you feel better? (Aside from Augustus Gloop, who really brought about his own downfall.)
Chocolate is all-powerful and much better than alcohol, because you can buy it any time of the day or night and it doesn’t give you a hangover. Chocolate is the world’s greatest invention. It can also save the world, by helping to make poverty history. And what’s even better is you don’t have to endure Bob Geldolf. Not even for one second. Isn’t that just peachy?
You see, to make chocolate, apart from small orange people with white eyebrows, you also need things like sugar and, most importantly, cocoa beans. Now, you need to pay attention to this bit, so put on your thinking glasses.
Sugar is really easy to grow. Anyone can do it. We grow lots over here. In fact we pay our farmers huge amounts of money to grow far too much of the stuff. Mountains of it. Then we ship this surplus over to places like Africa, where we sell it for a ridiculously cheap price. The sort of price that you can’t really make a profit from.
However, like I said, sugar is really easy to grow and lots of African farmers grow it too. And because we sell our excess sugar so cheaply, they can’t get a good price for their sugar, so they end up slipping further into debt. Now that’s just mean.
So then they might want to grow cocoa beans. Let’s face it, that’s the most important ingredient in chocolate. Without it you’re just eating cream and sugar and that’s just disgusting. Well, after a while it gets disgusting, but I admit it takes quite a while.
The thing is, the cocoa bean isn’t worth a great deal by itself. What really makes money is the refined cocoa powder. For which you need a factory and there aren’t many of them in Africa. Therefore they grow this wonderful, fantastic-tasting bean which, ironically, isn’t really worth a bean. So the farmers who can’t afford to be building factories, which is all of them, can’t afford to eat. Not even the cocoa beans, as they need as many as they can to make a pittance.
By now, if you’re still here, you’re probably wondering. if this all happens, then surely eating chocolate is a bad evil thing that only moustache-twirling, cape-wearing villains would eat? Well, yes, if you buy chocolate from the big companies like Nestle or Cadburys or Mars.
You don’t have to have a moustache to enjoy Fair Trade chocolate
But if you buy chocolate from companies like Divine, which have the wonderful Fair Trade mark, you can eat your chocolate in the warm fuzzy feeling that comes from knowing that the farmers who grew the beans were paid a fair, living wage for doing so and are sat in their hut eating something nice too.
And that’s how chocolate can save lives. Isn’t it a wonderful creation?