Unwrap a fairer future for cocoa farmers

7th July 2021 | Eativity editors

To mark World Chocolate Day (July 7), Fairtrade has unveiled a new global campaign, Bitter Sweet, which features a stop-motion animation titled “Unwrap a Fairer Future”. The film, which will reach people across 22 countries, literally unwraps the bitter truth behind the unethical cocoa sourcing practices used by some major chocolate manufacturers.

Unwrap a Fairer Future is designed to show consumers how choosing Fairtrade chocolate can change the lives of cocoa farmers. Produced by Fairtrade in collaboration with Dutch visual artist and animator Niels Hoebers, the stop-motion animation tells the story of two bespoke bars of chocolate. At first glance, both bars look good enough to eat, but once unwrapped, the bars tell two vastly different stories.

The bitter bar shows the cocoa lands of West Africa, where uncertified cocoa farmers who are unable to grow their crop on Fairtrade terms face injustice and low prices, leading to poverty and deforestation that holds farming communities back. But the film also depicts a sweeter side: Fairtrade-certified cocoa farmers are paid a Fairtrade Minimum Price for their goods, which acts as a safeguard when market prices drop, and organic production is incentivised with a higher price. Fairtrade farmers also benefit from rigorous independent standards and receive support to adapt their farming practices to meet those standards.

“We’re making the bitter cost of each non-certified chocolate bar instantly apparent,” says Nilufar Verjee, Fairtrade Director of Public Engagement. “This is a shareable way to discover why cocoa farmers who grow the cocoa in our chocolate deserve better incomes.”

Fairtrade cocoa farmers receive higher incomes and enjoy a better quality of life.

New research into the living standards of cocoa farming families shows that on average, Fairtrade boosts farmers’ spending on household essentials beyond the need for food by nine percent. Fairtrade farmers in the most impoverished circumstances benefit most, making 69 percent more income from growing cocoa than their non-certified counterparts.

“Every Fairtrade bar of chocolate you buy, every cocoa bean, means decent healthcare, education and a collective voice all the way through the supply chain,” says Fairtrade advocate, Bridgerton actress Adjoa Andoh. “Make the choice for hope, a future and joy, through the delicious medium of chocolate. Happy Fairtrade World Chocolate Day!”

As part of the campaign, 22 Fairtrade global regions will be sharing information on social media about Fairtrade’s impact, where to buy Fairtrade chocolate and how consumers can help to spread the word by sharing the film with their networks. Every consumer that chooses Fairtrade chocolate helps to ensure that farmers and workers in low-income countries get a sweeter deal for their produce, rather than a bitter one.

To find Fairtrade chocolate brands in Australia, head to fairtradeanz.org