Heroes: The Chocolate Industry

After an eye-opening (and, let’s face it, depressing) look at Nestle, I really needed a wonderful company to come along and save my chocolate addiction for me.  Enter Endangered Species.  You may have seen their unassuming products at the supermarket (though, probably not, unless you shop at Whole Foods or have an affinity for pictures of wild animals).  They carry a variety of flavors, from fruit-infused to hazelnut to dark mocha- but that’s not what should draw you to this company.  In response to Nestle, in seems that Endangered Species is all about making the world a better place!

Right on the wrapper, you can see that the company is committed to donating 10% of their profits to charity.  Upon further investigation (all of this is detailed in their website) you can see that they have divided up their commitment into two categories: local and global.

Globally, Endangered Species is basically doing everything that Nestle is not.  Not only are they committed to sustainable farming practices, but they are actively involved with the farms that they buy from, both by promising to pay fair ages and funding sustainability projects in the local communities.  The company also boasts a formal commitment to not allowing any child or slave labor in either of their source locations- Ecuador and the Ivory Coast.

Located in Indiana, Endangered Species employees in the US are all involved with local charities and food bank projects.  Many times, they will donate surplus product that is about to expire.  Here is the list provided on their website:

Second Helpings (teaches culinary skills to homeless)

Gleaners Food Bank of America

Hope in Action

Humane Society of Indianapolis

Wheeler Mission (homeless shelter)

Peace Learning Center

In addition to being involved with these local charities, the company has founded the Endangered Species Chocolate Foundation, which couples their commitment to 10% profit donation with monies given from private donors.  This organization allows them to give grants to other conservation partners and to better fund the sustainability projects located in their involved communities in Ecuador and Ivory Coast.

Truly, this is a company worth supporting.  Next time you are in the grocery store, take a gander to the natural foods aisle, and you will likely find a section of chocolate- including Endangered Species!  My favorite is their Hazelnut & Currant.  Enjoy!

Other ethical brands of chocolate to consider: Divine, Green & Black’s, Rapunzel, Newman’s Own.

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