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THIS YEAR’S ROTTEN EGG GOES TO…

Now referred to as the ‘Easter Scorecard’, we still prefer The rotten egg awards. The amazing Mighty Earth puts these together each year at a time when we are all getting ready to indulge in chocolate for the Easter holiday.

The period sees a huge uptick in sales for chocolate companies, making it the number one chocolate event of the year, so the publicity of being awarded either a good egg or a rotten egg at this time of year packs a slightly heavier punch.

What is the Scorecard?

It’s a visual representation – an infographic which rates companies in the below areas. The ratings are based on surveys sent to the companies. Those which don’t respond appear at the bottom – more on that later. I urge you to read the full report from the Mighty Earth website here.

  • Due Diligence
  • Traceability & Transparency
  • Living Income
  • Child Labour
  • Deforestation & Climate
  • Agroforestry

Who is Behind the Scorecard?

Some pretty respectable organisations collect and correlate the data and put their name to the Easter Scorecard. Be Slavery Free, Green America, INKOTA, Mighty Earth and National Wildlife Foundation.

While the awards for rotten eggs gather a lot of publicity, we owe it to the companies who won ‘Good Egg’ awards to put them in the spotlight, so let’s start with them.

With this scorecard, consumers in the US, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, and beyond can buy Easter chocolates from the heart. They now have clear guidance on which companies are shining and which companies’ treats are likely tainted by deforestation and human rights abuses. – National Wildlife Federation Senior Advisor Etelle Higonnet.

Good Eggs

Alter Eco Logo 17746911 Ede3 4C35 86E8 748E234Ba63B

With mouthwatering product offerings like their Dark Salted Brown Butter bars, and at a price point of just $3.99 alter eco shows it is possible to make ethical choices with a wide consumer appeal.

For those who wish to deep-dive into their sustainability approach, there is a link to their 2019 report under their sustainability menu.

The company has produced a mission statement that is ambitious in its simplicity:

is to pioneer a full circle approach to eating, farming, and doing business – and to inspire others to do the same.

Chocolats Halba E1616577356985

Swiss Chocolate company Chocolats Halba is another winner that puts its sustainability programme in a prominent place on their website. The sustainability page links to multiple reports on the left side of the page where you can download and read their action plans. They are up to date too, with the deforestation report being released in December 2020.

The company also works B2B, which is great if you’re wishing to produce high quality private label chocolates, and inherit all the sustainability credentials that are associated with it.

Tony Front Blauw

Tony’s Chocolonely has come under some negative reviews recently because of its association with Barry Callebaut. The reviews were probably a little unfair and we have spoken previously about our opinion. So we were happy to see them recognised here in an equal top spot. In particular, it’s good to see them being awarded full marks in the Child Labour category.

Tony’s does a lot to promote ethical practices beyond child labour, however, and I particularly have liked the transparency in their reporting, which they have also made easy to read and understand.

What About the Rotten Eggs?

There are a number of companies that didn’t respond to the survey, and that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re bad, but it’s not a good look. Those companies were:

  • Starbucks
  • Storck (Werthers, Toffifay, Merci)
  • Unilver (Ben & Jerry’s, Klondike, Breyers)
  • Valrhona

Companies that were brave enough to respond with what they must have know where not great results, and made it to the bottom of the list were:

  • Morinaga
  • Meiji
  • Itochu (a trader)
  • Touton

Surprises

Let’s give credit where it’s due. Godiva has moved from winner of last years rotten egg award at the bottom of the score card, up 11 places! Big improvements have been made, especially in the areas of deforestation and agroforestry, while more has yet to be done in the areas of child labour and due diligence.

A surprise of a less welcome nature is that Ben & Gerry’s didn’t respond to the survey. We have written favourably about the company several times in regard to their policies of paying premiums to farmers for cocoa. It’s a bit strange and disappointing that they have not been involved with this years report, but we hope that they will be back next year.

Author

  • Nick 2017 500X500 1

    Nick Baskett is the editor in Chief at Bartalks. He holds a diploma from the Financial Times as a Non Executive Director and works as a consultant across multiple industries. Nick has owned multiple businesses, including an award-winning restaurant and coffee shop in North Macedonia.

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