This Non-Profit Is Fighting Global Poverty with Blockchain and Chocolate


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According to a report published by Fast Company on October 7, 2019, Netherlands-based FairChain Foundation, in association with the United Nations Development Programme, has launched a blockchain pilot to help fight global poverty. Most notably, the pilot involves a chocolate bar called The Other Bar which gives the consumers a choice between donating cryptocurrency back to the farmers in Ecuador or use it to buy the next chocolate bar at a discount.

Saving the Day in a Novel Way

The rapidly evolving distributed ledger technology (DLT) space has no dearth of innovative solutions to help tackle global issues like climate change, disaster management, and now, fighting global poverty.

If a new report is to be believed, the two main ingredients required to develop a cure for global poverty are blockchain and chocolate. This fascinating combination comes as a result of a pilot launched by the blockchain project FairChain Foundation which has developed The Other Bar, a chocolate treat that can potentially help boost the income of underpaid cocoa farmers in Ecuador.

Currently, cocoa farmers in Ecuador receive a meager three percent of the value of the cocoa that is used to make a typical chocolate bar. Unfortunately, the vast majority of these farmers don’t even earn enough to make a decent living.

Guido van Staveren, Founder of the FairChain Foundation, said that the Foundation is working toward launching a DLT pilot that would not only help alleviate the socio-economic conditions of these farmers but also help in breeding a sense of safety and transparency among customers about the product. He added that post the launch of the pilot, Fairtrade farmers will be able to earn $3,400 a metric ton compared to the current world cocoa price of $1,900 a metric ton.

A Push Toward Impact Investing

Per sources close to the matter, the pilot comprises of ten participating farmers and includes a limited run of 20,000 chocolate bars made from Ecuadorian cocoa. Notably, these dark and white chocolate bars are scheduled to go on sale online on October 14, 2019.

Staveren commented on the development, saying:

This is an experiment in what we can do to drive conscious consuming towards impact goals.

He added:

The whole idea is to use technology to influence consumer behavior and basically turn every product into a capitalist impact engine.

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