Organic chocolate maker Green & Black’s have pledged to switch its entire worldwide food and beverage range to Fairtrade by the end of next year, in a groundbreaking move that will make it the world’s leading manufacturer of organic Fairtrade chocolate.
The company’sMaya Gold chocolate was the first official Fairtrade product to go on sale in Britain 15 years ago. Its extended range of chocolate bar and beverage products in the UK will start to carry the distinctive blue and green Fairtrade logo from late 2010, and it is hoped that full conversion of the entire chocolate bar and beverage range in more than 30 countries will be achieved by the end of 2011.
The move to Fairtrade certification will build on the original Fairtrade relationship with cocoa farmers in Belize through guaranteed funding. It will also significantly increase Fairtrade sales in the UK. Green & Black’s annual retail sales are approximately £65m.
The Fairtrade market, which now covers products from developing countries ranging from chocolate and coffee to cotton, was worth £22m in 1999, according to a recent survey from the Co-op. Last year, sales of Fairtrade products grew to £635m and the Co-operative is predicting it could break the £1bn barrier in 2010.