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Midwinter Resolution: Fair Trade Baking

Posted in Food and Drinks, Green Product Reviews on January 31st, 2013

Something that “A Year of Biblical Womanhood” reminded me of was that chocolate is frequently farmed with slave labor, and that farmers are exploited by the large manufacturing companies who produce and distribute it. I don’t keep a lot of candy in my house, but I do buy chocolate chips and cocoa powder to use when baking fairly regularly.

I like to give Divine fair trade chocolate as a gift, but last week at the supermarket I thought about the fact that the chips in my cookies might be made by slaves too. I knew that there were human rights problems with Nestle and Hershey (although the latter has said they will only be using slave labor for a few more years) I reached for Ghirardelli, which I honestly think is better quality than those other brands, albeit slightly more expensive. Although they claim they do not use slave labor, Ghirardelli is not fair trade certified.

For Christmas, Adam and I received some Dagoba drinking chocolate which is organic and Rainforest Alliance Certified. It’s also the best hot chocolate I have ever had.

The second best hot chocolate I have ever had was made with Guittard Cococa Rouge, which to my happy surprise is both Fair Trade and Rainforest Alliance certified! (They should put that on the label!)

So I do have some ideas on which brands of fair trade cocoa powder I will like to use in baking. But, what about chocolate chips? I could buy some fair trade chocolate bars and break them up, but looking around online there are several different companies that do sell fair trade chocolate chips.

The previously mentioned Divine, Dagoba and Guittard sell chips or drops. As do Sunspire and Sweet Earth. I have not yet tried any of these, and I hope I am equal to the task! Let me know if you have any recommendations.

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