‘If it weren’t for Aldi this wouldn’t be happening’, The Dean of St John’s Cathedral, Brisbane, Dr Peter Catt, said.
‘It was a close thing.’
Last year the only chocolate egg to be seen at St John’s was the one pictured on the Cathedral’s notice board.
‘Last year we made the decision to abandon chocolate eggs after a fruitless search for eggs certified to be ‘slavery-free’’’, Dr Catt said
‘Much of the world’s cocoa is produced by child slaves. It is the dark side of the chocolate industry.
‘We encourage people to look for chocolate that is certified by Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance or UTZ. These logos show customers that the chocolate has been made in monitored conditions that aim to prevent the trafficking of children.
‘Once again this year we visited numerous stores and in most the situation has not improved much on last year.
‘Coles and Woolworths have token offerings of certified chocolate, most of which is overly expensive. Having only expensive certified eggs in the marketplace creates the idea that the general public can’t afford to avoid chocolate that may have been produced by child slaves.
‘This just isn’t true.
‘In the UK and Europe public sensitivity to the issue has seen large amounts of certified product become available with very little increase in price.
‘I am glad to see that the entire Easter range at Aldi is slavery free. This year we have sourced our Easter chocolate from them.
‘I am deeply concerned that many Australian manufacturers and retailers are dragging the chain. Some have made the switch on a number of their products, but this has not carried over to their Easter product range.
‘Easter is a celebration of life. We shouldn’t in conscience enjoy that celebration at the expense of children in other parts of the world.
‘We hope that by next Easter more retailers will embrace the simple ethical response that is open to them,’ Dr Catt said.
The Anglican Church of Southern Queensland is a member of The Stop the Traffik Coalition which exists to end slavery world-wide.
More on the work of Stop the Traffick can be found at http://www.stopthetraffik.org/australia