A number of us in the Jewish and larger social justice streams have been tracking the issue of child slave labor and the chocolate industry (Hershey is not the only or worst culprit here) for some time. My cousin’s son gave a dvar challenging his congregation to audit their chocolate choices in 2009 at his bar mitzvah. He came to this issue by identifying with Joseph being tossed down the pit and crying out with no one to hear him, abandoned by those he loved (his dvar Torah is attached on this page).You will also see a Fair Trade Chocolate Seder, an Adat Shalom supplement supplied to me by Rabbi Erin Hirsh, some information from Fair Trade Judaica who are organizing their own Jewish community campaign, links supplied by Cantor Eric Schulmiller of Reconstructionist congregation RSNS, NY. For thousands of children on this planet, slavery is not a historical event, but a current reality. We can make a difference.
Fair Trade Judaica: (http:/www.fairtradejudaica.org), a non-profit organization promoting fair trade as a Jewish value, is organizing an educational campaign in the Jewish community, linking the Pesach theme of liberation with the issue of child labor/slavery in the cocoa industry. See the website for Pesach at http://fairtradejudaica.org/make-a-difference/fair-trade-jewish-holidays/bean-of-affliction/
Fair Trade Judaica has put together a variety of Pesach related resources: Free Haggadah supplemental readings, http://fairtradejudaica.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/HaggadahSupplement2012.pdf
“Virtual” Fair Trade Kosher for Passover Chocolate Bar to place on the Seder table, http://fairtradejudaica.org/make-a-difference/fair-trade-jewish-holidays/fair-trade-your-seder/virtual-chocolate-bar/
List of kosher, fair-trade chocolate makers, none of it is yet certified kosher l'pesach, because of the extra expense: http://jcarrot.org/resources/kosher-sustainable-chocolate-list
RSNS haggadah, which is now part of COEJL's resource bank:
Website has a link to our instructions for how to run a fair-trade tu bishvat seder: http://www.hazon.org/food/tuBishvat/FairTradeTuBishvatSeder.pdf
Beyond-fair-trade chocolate company! Workers are shareholders, healthcare and onsite daycare are provided, beans are all local, etc. http://omanhenecocoa.com/?page_id=378.
"Raise the Bar” campaign, coordinated by the International Labor Rights Forum, Green America, Global Exchange, and Oasis USA, focusing on encouraging the Hershey Corp. to commit to begin sourcing fair trade certified cocoa beans within the next two years: http://www.raisethebarhershey.org/
U.S.A. Fair Trade Chocolate purchases: full article at: http://tinyurl.com/4h3f57p
Green and Just Celebrations Guide: http://www.greenandjust.org/
Website looking at Child Slavery and Food Industry: http://www.foodispower.org/slavery_chocolate.htm
Fair Trade Guide from Jewish Community in UK: http://www.fairtrade.org.uk/includes/documents/cm_docs/2009/j/jewish_community_resource.pdf