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Bitter Chocolate: The Dark Side of the World's Most Seductive Sweet [Hardcover]

Our Price $ 23.76  
Retail Value $ 27.95  
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Item Number 385276  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   328
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1.25" Width: 5.75" Height: 8.5"
Weight:   0.54 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Apr 1, 2008
Publisher   New Press
ISBN  1595583300  
EAN  9781595583307  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
An expos of historical corruption in the cocoa industry reveals the role of slavery and child labor in chocolate production from the early sixteenth century to the present, in an account that traces the industry's use of beleaguered indentured workers in order to meet increasing demands for inexpensive chocolate.

Buy Bitter Chocolate: The Dark Side of the World's Most Seductive Sweet by Carol Off from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9781595583307 & 1595583300

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More About Carol Off

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Carol Off is a co-host of CBC radio's current affairs program "As It Happens". One of Canada's leading investigative journalists, she has won numerous awards for her CBC television documentaries set in Africa, Asia, and Europe. She lives in Toronto, Canada.

Carol Off currently resides in Toronto.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Powerful and un-biased  Oct 14, 2008
Researching the poor working conditions in third world countries, I thought this book would only give me the history of chocolate. Instead I discovered a comprehensive look at the abuses in the cocoa sector primarily in the Cote d'Ivoire. A combination of the developed countries demand for cheap chocolate, corrupt government, corrupt police and avaricious manufacturers, the true losers are the farmers and the "indentured" workers who produce my favorite food source. Carol Off presents an unbiased look at the world's favorite confection.
Interesting expose of the cruelty behind our favorite dessert  Aug 11, 2008
This book is half history, half passionate condemnation of "Big Chocolate." As a chocolaholic myself, it did make bitter reading. Apparently, the international chocolate industry is fueled by the cruel exploitation of child labor in Africa. These children are treated no better than slaves. Others who are complicit in the many sins of this industry include the Europeans and American companies who profit from it, the IMF and World Bank who impose impossible conditions on producer nations, the corrupt leaders and officials in the countries themselves who cynically exploit their own citizens and of course we, the consumers.
France comes in for particular condemnation for its behavior in Cote D'Ivoire.
I learned from this book that it has always been thus. Major companies like Cadbury and Rowntree were founded by Quakers devoted to the ideals of treating their employees well and did so -- in England. But they turned a blind eye to the horrible slave-like conditions of those who grew and picked the crop in Africa. Likewise, Milton Hershey was an enlightened though paternalistic employer in America -- but did not care about the poor Africans who actually produced his raw materials.
It's an interesting, though depressing book. It's well-researched and well-written but it can't be called real investigative reporting since it relies mostly on the fruits of others' labors and a bit too much on Canadian sources. It spreads its condemnation a little too wide as well on occasion. I sometimes felt the entire capitalist system was under assault. However, still very much worth reading.

I guess I'm weak. I still like chocolate occasionally. I guess I'll try to find "fair trade" and "organic" products in future.
For more on me and my book The Nazi Hunter: A Novel go to

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