Reported by Green America:
This August, a coalition of US consumer-owned grocer cooperatives and natural food retailers took a stand: In response to the organizing work of our Fair Trade Program, they signed a letter to Hershey demanding a fair supply chain.
However, one major national chain — one with a reputation for carrying wholesome foods — was a notable hold-out. Whole Foods refused to sign on to the appeal to Hershey.
While other major chocolate brands have agreed to make major commitments to sourcing ethical chocolate, Hershey has not. With Hershey’s higher-end products like its Dagoba and Sharffenberger lines appearing on Whole Foods’ shelves, Whole Foods is supporting a corporation that derives profits from products tainted by exploitative child labor.
We’re asking that Whole Foods join food cooperatives in taking a stand. Whole Foods’ size, scope, and buying power can add even more incentive for Hershey to improve its supply chain. And truly Fair Trade chocolate companies deserve even greater support from distributors — like Whole Foods — that style themselves wholesome fair-labor leaders.