A brief look at cocoa farming
Cacao trees are often grown as a monoculture, a practice which rapidly degrades soil. Soil devoid of nutrients contributes to deforestation. Deforestation leads to dry, impoverished land and the loss of biodiversity.
Small-scale producers must contend with very low market prices that do not allow them to generate sufficient income to improve their precarious economic situations. To generate more revenue, producers use strategies that promote rapid but unsustainable crop growth: pesticide use, monocropping, etc. Producers also turn toward cheap or free labour to decrease the cost of operations; that is to say, child labour.
Want to know more?
Check out France 2’s special coverage on child labour in cocoa production: Cacao : les enfants pris au piège.