There’s two big names in confectionery: Cadbury and Mars.
Usually they just compete in how ridiculous their ads can get, but over the last year they’ve started to compete in who is helping the humble cocoa farmer more.
The latest is the announcement that Cadbury will be applying for Fair Trade certification for Dairy Milk blocks supplied to the UK & Ireland.
This is under the Cadbury Cocoa Partnership, where the company has pledged £45 million to securing the future of cocoa farmers across the world.
With such huge buying power, a Fair Trade commitment by Cadbury is expected to have the most effect in Ghana – the company estimates that Fair Trade cocoa sales for the country will be tripled.
But Mars claims that getting a fair price isn’t the biggest threat for cocoa farmers at the moment – disease is.
It’s not the easiest of plants to grow in the first place, requiring warmth, shade and lots of water. But currently with a lack of research and education, farmers are strugglingto keep productivity up.
Enter Mars and IBM:
The company has also contributed to charities to preserve the sustainability of the cocoa industry, like this one by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Cadbury wants to give farmers better prices for their product; Mars wants to improve their productivity.
Which do you think will be better for cocoa farmers?
Source: Environmental Leader
[For more information on issues within the cocoa industry, have a look at the World Cocoa Foundation.]