The Chocolate School

To mark Chocolate Week,  I’ve written a blog in praise of the power of chocolate. Chocolate Week runs from 10th to 16th October. More information at www.chocolateweek.co.uk.

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The highlight of my career as a writer was to do with chocolate. It happened in the school pictured below.

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Lots of the children pictured there with me have parents who work as cocoa bean farmers.

I was in Akomadan to research fair trade chocolate with the help of Divine Chocolate. They took me to the school to meet the children of cocoa bean farmers. I also got to look round some of the farms. This gave me invaluable information about settings, characters and chocolate economics for my children’s book, Off Side.

Before I left for Ghana, Divine told me that lots of the children Akomadan had never tasted the chocolate from the beans that their parents farmed. I was packed off with a suitcase full of Dubble Bars to put that right.

The look on the faces of the kids as they ate their Dubble bars was fantastic. But that wasn’t the highlight of my career.

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The highlight was the school we were in. Here’s why.

Every time we buy a fair trade chocolate bar, a part of the extra few pence we spend goes to building schools like the one I visited.

If we don’t buy fairtrade chocolate there is a likelihood that the farmers will not be paid properly for their work – and a certainty that some of the profits will not go back into building schools that the children would otherwise not have.

By choosing a chocolate bar with the fair trade logo on it choosy chocolate buyers had helped build that school.

There is more about my trip to Ghana and how fairtrade chocolate makes a difference here.

And – if you want to know more about my book, Off Side, featuring the son of a cocoa bean farmer, there is more here. http://tompalmer.co.uk/foul-play/off-side/

Thanks for reading.

And happy Chocolate Week.

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