Chocolate is a luxury food item that many of us crave, buy and enjoy without much thought. While
chocolate is a big industry, it has a dark side. As you read, listen and think about the chocolate industry,
always consider the ‘new bottom line’ and ethical practices by industry.
The video provides one proposed solution to the dark side of chocolate (child labor and trafficking from
countries like Mali and Burkina Faso), which is the Harkin Engel Protocol. This agreement was signed in
2001 and was an industry initiative to solve the problem of child labor and trafficking.
Many senior government officials and businesses adamantly deny the use of child labor and trafficking,
yet several undercover journalists have found children as young as 8 who are working illegally in the cocoa
industry. Despite these denials, children are still found picking cocoa beans on plantations far away from
home. They are not attending school and work long hours, often with no pay. The work location and
conditions are difficult to locate, which makes tracing the trafficking and child labor very difficult.
The beans are picked by children who are not paid. The beans are later exported to larger chocolate
dealers who profit hugely. Yet, the industry claims they have invested 75 million dollars to support cocoa
communities and reduce child labor.
What do you think?
Watch this documentary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Vfbv6hNeng (46 minutes)
MsKandyrose’s channel. (2012, January 21). Documentary. The dark side of chocolate [Video File].
Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Vfbv6hNeng
This documentary is based on information gathered from undercover journalists who traveled to parts of
Africa (Ivory Coast and Ghana) and posed as chocolate industry buyers in order to uncover the dark side of
the chocolate industry.
Post-listening question – Writing Assignment (15%)
Writing Assignment Prompt:
The Dark side of the chocolate documentary is a shocking example of how corporate greed may lead to
unsustainable and unfair practices, which go against the new bottom line.
The new bottom line (triple bottom line) has been promoted as an ethically responsible framework for
businesses working toward sustainable practices (Talberth, 2008; Slaper & Hall, 2011).
Working towards a balanced triple bottom line, how could the chocolate industry partner with a non-profit
the organization, government agency, and/ or community group to implement more responsible economic,
environmental and social measures? You can include one additional source to help support your answer.
Your response should:
1. Introduce the topic of Sustainable Development.
2. Explain (don’t list) the problems identified in this video. Show an understanding of the imbalance /
Writing Assignment: Chocolate the Bitter Truth (15%)
3. Relate to course articles.
4. Present possible solutions.
5. Be approximately 700-750 words and follow the writing guidelines listed here below:
b. size 12 font/ Arial or Times New
c. double spaces
d. 1-inch margin
e. cover page with course, my name,
your name, and student number,
title of assignment
The reading by Slaper and Hall (2011) is a key point of reference, as is the video above. It is expected that
you cite these two sources and at least one other reading from your course-pack. I encourage you to draw
on one NEW source for extra and unique information. For example, you could look at a chocolate
company website. Focus on language accuracy, critical thinking, paragraph structure, and academic
Writing Assignment 1 15%
A+ (90% – 100%)
You fully understand what to do; all steps of the assignment are completed very well. Your paper shows an excellent
understanding and development of your topic. Your topic and thesis statement are clearly introduced; your writing purpose
makes sense. You use precise topic sentences and strong support from your sources. The reader can understand the paper
without difficulty because you have few language errors. You have an excellent range of vocabulary (including transition and
framing statements); these make your paper logical, organized and coherent. Your essay is formatted exactly per the
instructions. You do an excellent job paraphrasing and referencing your sources. This is a pleasure to read.
A-, A (80 – 89%)
You understand what to do; all steps of the assignment are completed well. Your paper shows a good understanding and
development of your topic. Your topic, thesis statement, and writing purpose are mostly clear for the reader. You use good topic
sentences and adequate support from your sources. The reader can understand the paper without difficulty even though you
have some small language errors. There is a logical flow of ideas. You have a good range of vocabulary (including transition and
framing statements); these make your paper logical, organized and coherent. Your essay is mostly formatted as per the
instructions. You do a very good job paraphrasing and referencing your sources. Overall this is a pleasure to read.
B-, B+ (70 – 79%)
You mostly understand what to do: all steps of the assignment are completed. Your paper shows an understanding of your topic,
but at times is superficial. Your topic, thesis statement, and writing purpose are clear, but sometimes may require more support
or a clearer explanation in order to convince the reader. Your topic sentences are mostly clear, but your support may not always
relate, or it may be too brief. The reader has some difficulty understanding your paper because of problems with your;
organization of ideas; language structure; and/ or vocabulary usage. Your follow most of the formatting requirements. You may
have some problems paraphrasing or referencing your sources appropriately. This is a good paper.