- It must be planted next to taller trees whose leaves will protect it from direct sun and high wind;
- It is susceptible to pests and disease which routinely destroy one-third of the world’s yearly crop.
- A tree must be five or six years old before it will bear fruit.
- Each tree bears about 30 usable pods a year, which translates to roughly 1000 beans a year.
- It takes 500 beans to make 1 pound of bittersweet chocolate – so in the best of circumstances, each tree produces beans for only 2 pounds of chocolate.
Fair trade is a relatively new concept but is gradually making strides for a relatively small number of farmers.
Presently, cocoa sold with the Fair Trade label still captures a very low share of the cocoa market (0.1%).
by fair trade agreements there are now stories of individuals feeling empowered and economically secure. The important thing now is for me to change my habit of purchasing chocolate that isn't grown by fair trade. I enjoy Snickers bars, Reeses peanut butter cups, Duncan Hines brownie mixes, and Nestle's semi-sweet chocolate chips! I have steered away from the organic chocolate because it is expensive. But now that i have knowledge, i can make no excuse to justify my purchase of these kinds of products. I must abstain or admit that i am supporting the industry. Every soul in this world is loved by God; we are one family. If one suffers, I suffer. Essentially there is no separation amongst us....
His Holiness Bahá'u'lláh has given instructions regarding every one of the questions confronting humanity. He has given teachings and instructions with regard to every one of the problems with which man struggles. Among them are (the teachings) concerning the question of economics that all the members of the body politic may enjoy through the working out of this solution the greatest happiness, welfare and comfort without any harm or injury attacking the general order of things. Thereby no difference or dissension will occur. No sedition or contention will take place. This solution is this:
First and foremost is the principle that to all the members of the body politic shall be given the greatest achievements of the world of humanity. Each one shall have the utmost welfare and well-being. To solve this problem we must begin with the farmer; there will we lay a foundation for system and order because the peasant class and the agricultural class exceed other classes in the importance of their service. In every village there must be established a general storehouse which will have a number of revenues.
(Abdu'l-Baha, Foundations of World Unity, p. 39)