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Sweet tooth

February 14, 2007

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I was supposed to have an appointment with a new dentist today, but thanks to the DC area’s ice storm (and freezing rain and sleet and snow and whatever else goes into a “wintry mix”), it’s going to be rescheduled. Sweet.

Meanwhile, an update on my exploration of Fair Trade Chocolate:

Mindy Pennybacker, aka Worrywart, writes about Divine Chocolate on the Green Guide. Parent company is in London, and a Washington office has recently opened. Wish I’d known about them sooner — they completed several tasting events in and around DC just this past week, and of course I missed them all for lack of knowledge!

Oh well. The company is founded by the Kuapa Kokoo farmers’ coop in Ghana, with farmer reps on the board and part owners of the company. Transfair USA gives Divine the Fair Trade certification, with some of the proceeds being invested back in the community, for things like education and health programs.

Sometime during the past couple of weeks I stumbled across a church class that’s selling another brand of Fair Trade products on eBay to raise money for Heifer International. This is nothing short of a brilliant win-win concept: Faith community + Fair Trade products for sale + one of the world’s most meaningful charitable organizations. Everyone’s a winner!

Here’s the Who-What-Where-When-Why and sometimes How: Equal Exchange Fundraising Brochure imgThe 7th grade class at St. Anthony’s of Padua School in Perma, OH, decided to do a project to help small farmers and to make the project national to help let more people learn about the equal exchange concept. The product line they are supporting is actually named Equal Exchange, in particular, coffee, tea and chocolate. It’s a year-long project. The class is also learning about marketing and other business procedures including advertising, brochures and purchasing.

I ordered some of the organic Very Dark Chocolate (71% cocoa) and also the organic Mint Chocolate bars (67% cocoa), which arrived just in time for me to mail a couple on to a friend. Have tried the mint, which strike a refreshing balance between just a hint of sweet and the satisfaction of dark. Mmmmm…

Be aware, if you’re ordering from overseas sources, some places that are currently in their summer season (like Australia) won’t ship to the U.S. because the chocolate could melt in transit depending on their choice of shipping method.

Now that my awareness of Fair Trade Organic Chocolate has been jostled, I’m finding more producers every week. The Green Guide offers a convenient round-up in its Chocolate Product Report. Read up on and compare Oxfam, the Sierra Club, Endangered Species, Equal Exchange and several others.

Wonder if having a sweet tooth for dark chocolate makes any difference at the dentist’s. Guess there’s no escape from brushing and flossing.


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