5 Major Chocolate Companies That Use Child Labor

5 Major Chocolate Companies That Use Child Labor

How much child labor is in the chocolate bar you're eating?

Child labor is prominent in areas of West Africa on cocoa farms. These farms will work children as young as six for extremely long hours for very low amounts of pay, sometimes less than $2 a day. Areas such as the Ivory Coast and Guana produce around 70-percent of the world's chocolate. Many young children are forced to work with dangerous equipment like chainsaws and machetes. These are five major chocolate companies that use child labor.

1. Hershey.

Hershey is the top chocolate producer in America, and produces popular candies such as Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and York Peppermint Patties. Hershey purchases its chocolate from the Ivory Coast, and has acknowledged that it understands that child labor is implemented to make its product.

2. Fowler's Chocolate.

Fowler's Chocolate claims to condemn child slavery, but their candies like their famous sponge chocolate are made with cocoa produced on the Ivory Coast.

3. Nestlé.

The brand's code of conduct prohibits child labor in their practices, however, it has personally done research and found more than 3,000 children are working on the cocoa farms that produce its chocolate. Some of the company's most popular chocolate bars are Butterfingers and Crunch Bars.

4. Godiva.

Godiva is one of the leading boxed chocolate brands and sold in stores such as Bloomingdale's and Macy's. Godiva has stated that it plans to purify its supply chain by 2020, but has not stated any concrete steps to make this happen.

5. Mars.

Mars produces candies like Twix and Snickers bars. Mars has acknowledged the practice of child labor and has stated that by 2020 none of their chocolate will be made by means of slavery. The company believes that this is a "realistic time frame" due to the large amount of cocoa farms and the difficulty of purifying all of them.

Consumers can help to end child slavery by avoiding these companies' products, thus pressuring them into reform.

Cover Image Credit: multiplyjustice.net

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5 Reasons Why Spring Is A Lie

Spring is a conspiracy theory this year.

Just like every other snotty little first grader, I was taught that there are four seasons: summer, fall, winter, and spring. For years this rang true to me, but this year I'm calling bullshit on whatever kind of lies my first grade teacher fed me. Spring does not exist and here's the proof.

1. It's cold outside.

I know that spring no longer exists because it's been winter for years. First-grade me was promised that once it hit March, the world would thaw and flowers would start popping out of the ground. And yet, it is April and I cannot remember what it feels like to take off this puffy coat and not be immediately struck with hypothermia. And yes, April has brought showers, but I am skeptical about May's flowers because as you see, I've been lied to before.

2. It doesn't smell right.

Spring has that smell, you know? It's clear and cool and a little bit chilly but you don't mind because it promises summer. You don't notice it creep in but then one day you're driving with the windows down and you catch a whiff of it and then just can't stop breathing it in.

3. Your car windows are shut.

Maybe you don't notice the smell because all of your car windows are sealed shut! You can try opening them, sure, but driving with your windows down makes the 50-degree weather we've been blessed with for two straight days now feel like the 30-degree weather that's about to come around. Again.

Maybe if one of your favorite artists would drop a gorgeous spring album that's just made to be played with the windows down, the weather gods would finally take the hint.

4. It's snowing.

We didn't even get this much snow when it was LEGALLY winter. All these snowstorms are turning their assignments in late and sorry, but I don't accept late work. I have a life too, you know.

5. No allergies.

How am I supposed to make fun of all my friends for their excessive sneezing and tissue use now? Spring is the one season out of the year that I have the upper hand on my friends because their eyes are blurry and itchy and they won't come outside because of the pollen, so all that's left is to watch Netflix and take a nap once their Benadryl kicks in. What am I supposed to do now- go outside?

Cover Image Credit: Allef Vinicius / Unsplash

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It's National Volunteer Month So Go Out And Volunteer

April is National Volunteer Month

April is a month full of different opportunities. Spring is attempting to finally show up, changes are being made, and different spring activities are starting to pop up. With all of the fun activities going on, it's easy to find something to do and you might even end up finding an activity you never thought you could enjoy.

One of the best opportunities out there is the ability to volunteer. While volunteer activities go on year round, some activities open up only during warmer months. Being that April is National Volunteer Month, it seems fitting to name a few volunteer activities to get involved in this spring.

1. Animal Shelters

Animal shelters tend to be in need of volunteers to help with caring for the animals that they take in. While the veterinarians and vet techs take care of things along the line of medications, they can always use volunteers to help with other portions of the shelter.

Cleaning up after the animals, providing play times, going through donations and helping bathe/groom the animals are all parts of volunteering. You'll help make the animals feel safe and loved, even if it's only for a short time. Being a volunteer, you may also get to help with the adoption events and fundraisers as well. Check out your local ASPCA to see what opportunities they might have.

2. Children's Hospitals

One of the more innovative ways of volunteering that I've seen regarding children's hospitals. Some people, like those volunteering with the Golisano Children's Hospital, have a whole network of people to help create comfort teddy bears for children staying in the hospital. The network has a series of people who cut out outfits for the bears, sew the outfits together and then dress the bears before being sent off to the children.

Another option for the same hospital is sewing little scrub caps with cartoon characters on them for the children so they have something familiar when going into surgery. Others dress up and sing as favorite characters.

3. Libraries

Library systems often have a volunteer program for those who want to be active in their communities. Some positions offered in general are reading groups, toddler play times, and resume building workshops. These volunteer-run activities often provide an outlet for members of the community.

Fundraisers for the libraries are also generally run by the volunteers in conjunction with the actual librarians. In volunteering, you may help someone to get their dream job, help contribute to child literacy, and maybe even make a friend or two.

4. Soup Kitchens

Another way to volunteer in the community is through local soup kitchens. You can help to serve food and maybe make somebodies day. You can also donate to the local soup kitchens and provide non-perishable goods or hold a can drive in which you help to battle hunger in your community. In providing basic items, such as toiletries, food and water, you may make a struggling individuals life just a little bit easier for at least one day.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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