February 10th, 2010
By Shermakaye Bass
Green Right Now
Over the past year or so, there’s been a velvety, yummy buzz: Chocolate may just save the planet!
Actually, that’s a stretch. But in the months leading up to the Copenhagen climate talks last December, several chocolate-makers claimed they were venturing further into fair trade practices, including Nestle, Mars and Cadbury.
Add to that the promising method of “cabruca farming” in Brazil — a way of supplementing rainforests with valuable cacao plants to offset wholesale slash-and-burn techniques. Then multiply those happy developments by now-abundant data showing that chocolate — dark chocolates and bittersweets, specifically — are good for our health, and you’ve got a growing body of evidence that semi-sweet, Fair Trade chocolate is not only good for body, heart and soul; it could be good for the environment.
“Chocolate is considered to be a super food,” says Steven Flood, co-owner of Fat Turkey Chocolates, an organic chocolatier based in Austin, Texas. “You could actually live and sustain yourself on chocolate alone and get everything you need. And you wouldn’t get fat. Because there’s not a lot of fat in dark chocolate.”