The destruction of national parks and protected areas is being attributed towards chocolate products who are being produced by major brands, according to a new report from Mighty Earth.
The investigation in question ruled that a host of big name companies such as Mars, Nestlé, Mondelēz International, Hershey and Godiva have all been purchasing cocoa which has been grown illegally through the deforestation of national parks, as well as other protected areas, in both the Ivory Coast and Ghana – the world’s two biggest cocoa growing countries.
Mighty Earth have come to the conclusion that in the Ivory Coast, growers have ventured into classified forests, national parks and other protected areas, while forests in the surrounding areas have been pretty much completely cleared. An estimated 30-40% of cocoa was grown illegally in protected areas in Ivory Coast, and this deforestation has practically wiped out the country’s forest elephant and chimpanzee populations.
Earlier this year, Prince Charles managed to persuade 34 of the world’s leading chocolate companies to pledge to issuing a plan on how to act on deforestation at the climate summit in Bonn, which takes place in November.
However, Mighty Earth remain unconvinced as they claim the companies in question have provided no specifics, while it remains unclear as to whether these companies will take genuine action to either remediate the enormous past deforestation, or to stop future deforestation.