Fast Company

Ethical Halloween Candy: The 4 Most Sustainable Brands

endangered species

Want to teach the kids that show up at your door on Halloween a lesson about sustainability? Greenopia recently rated 10 of the top candy manufacturers using a number of factors, including ingredient sourcing, transparency, transportation methods, and product packaging. Each of the usual suspects--Jelly Belly, Mars, Nestle, Hershey's, Pez, and Godiva--received an embarrassing zero out of four leaves on the Greenopia scale. But the four companies below received kudos for their efforts in greening the candy business. Granted, you may not want to dish out $3 bars of Halloween candy (we're looking at you, Endangered Species Chocolate). But at least these brands provide an alternative to companies with poor environmental reporting and suspiciously sourced candy.

1. Endangered Species Chocolate

The animal-themed packaging certainly makes this chocolate look green enough--and as it turns out, it is. Greenopia gave Endangered Species Chocolate four leaves for organic and ethically-grown chocolate, good environmental reporting, water-based ink on packaging, and a production process that takes place in a LEED-certified building.

2. Theo

Another four-leaf brand, Theo's products are all organic and fair trade certified. The brand also makes sure to source local ingredients and use renewable energy whenever possible. One criticism from Greenopia: a lack of transparency in the company's supply chain.

3. Yummy Earth

Yummy Earth uses local and organic ingredients and is relatively transparent about its supply chain. The four-leaf brand doesn't, however, use any recycled materials in its packaging.

4. Cadbury

This popular manufacturer only received one leaf, but Greenopia gave it major kudos for its goals of sourcing 50% of its chocolate from sustainable sources by 2010 and cutting its climate impact by 50% by 2020. In the future, Cadbury might consider adding organic products and renewable energy sources in production.

[Via Greenopia]

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3 Comments

  • Rodney North

    When it comes to a teaching moment on Halloween our chocolate company (and Fast Company Social Capitalist award winner), www.EqualExchange.coop , is working with a handful of like-minded companies, human rights and advocacy organizations on the 3rd annual Reverse-Trick-or-Treating campaign wherein thousands of kids and their parents will be doing the educating that night as they go door to door.

    Specifically they will be educating their neighbors about the ongoing problems of forced child labor and chronic poverty in the cocoa trade, and how Fair Trade chocolate helps to tackle those problems. When the adult opens the door these trick-or-treaters will hand to them an informational card about this problem, attached to which will be one of our mini, organic, Fair Trade chocolates.

    This, along with a similar effort by select retailers, we expect to reach over 250,000 households next week.

    To learn more about the problem of child labor see: http://www.gourmet.com/foodpol...

    A key advocate in this effort is the International Labor Rights Forum, who has compiled their own “scorecard” that ranks chocolate companies on how well, or poorly, they’re addressing this crisis. http://www.laborrights.org/sit...

    Lastly, just for the record, 100% of our chocolates are certified organic, and use only Fair Trade Certified cocoa AND sugar.

  • Steph S

    Actually...I learned info von this very blog that would seem to make Mars a notch above Cadbury.

    http://www.fastcompany.com/blo...

    Mars committed to certifying 100% of its cocoa as sustainable, certified through 3rd parties, by 2020. Their website says they have already committed to 100,000 tons each of Rainforest Alliance and Utz sooner than that. They also have a huge solar panel in NJ, a methane project in Waco, and work with Terracycle to reclaim packaging waste. this is way more than Cadbury on an overall scale. Mars also owns Seeds of Change, just as Cadbury owns Green & Blacks (and Hershey owns Dagoba)...putting organic in a wider market.

  • Rodney North

    When it comes to a teaching moment on Halloween our chocolate company (and Fast Company Social Capitalist award winner), www.EqualExchange.coop, is working with a handful of like-minded companies, human rights and advocacy organizations on the 3rd annual Reverse-Trick-or-Treating campaign wherein thousands of kids and their parents will be doing the educating that night as they go door to door.

    Specifically they will be educating their neighbors about the ongoing problems of forced child labor and chronic poverty in the cocoa trade, and how Fair Trade chocolate helps to tackle those problems. When the adult opens the door these trick-or-treaters will hand to them an informational card about this problem, attached to which will be one of our mini, organic, Fair Trade chocolates.

    This, along with a similar effort by select retailers, we expect to reach over 250,000 households next week.

    To learn more about the problem of child labor see: http://www.gourmet.com/foodpol...

    A key advocate in this effort is the International Labor Rights Forum, who has compiled this “scorecard” that ranks chocolate companies on how well, or poorly, they’re addressing this crisis. http://www.laborrights.org/sit...