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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hershey's Moves to Mexico

After decades of making chocolate in the U.S.A., Hershey's is going south of the border to save (What else?) money.

Normally I don’t like to talk about products that AREN’T made in the U.S. but instead prefer to promote those that are. However some recent disturbing news has changed my mind. It seems that Hershey’s, once a staple of American industry, has already closed several plants in the U.S. and moved their chocolate production to Mexico. (I’m sure founder Milton Hershey is spinning in his grave because of this UnAmerican decision.)

Representatives at the 113-year-old company have described the plant shutdown as part of a “global supply-chain transformation.” Overall, about 3,000 of Hershey’s 13,000 workers will lose their jobs, including as many as 900 in the company’s hometown of Hershey, Pennsylvania. By 2010, Hershey says, the moves will save shareholders as much as $190 million annually. Well isn’t that thoughtful? Reward the shareholders, punish the workers. Hey, it’s becoming the American way these days. Money first, then people. (Suzie Orman would not be happy.)

While I have not been a Hershey’s fan for many years because they have added so much wax and oils to their products that it no longer tastes like chocolate, I still would like to see the jobs stay in the founding country.

Americans should boycott anything Hershey’s, including Cadburys. Instead, buy good organic chocolate that doesn’t contain wax, chemicals or added oils.

Here are some American-made (and healthier) chocolates I recommend:

Ghirardelli Chocolate.

Incorporate in 1852, the company has made its premium chocolate at a factory in San Leandro, CA, since 1967. Though not organic, Ghirardelli is one of the few companies in America that controls the entire chocolate manufacturing process, from cocoa bean to finished product. And it is the oldest American chocolate maker too.

You can buy Ghirardelli chocolates at your local grocery store, drug store, mass-merchandise store, specialty store, department store, and specialty shops.

Find the nearest store with Ghirardelli products at

Sweet Earth Chocolates.

100% made in the USA. And a bonus – it’s fairtrade and organic!

Order these delicious chocolates online at

Thompson Candy.

Since 1879, Thompson Candy has been making premium quality chocolate in the USA. Today it is made in Meriden, Connecticut.

Dagoba Organic Chocolate.

Dagoba’s fairtrade and organic chocolate factory is located in Ashland, Oregon.

Find their products in health food stores or order online at

I know there are a lot of independent chocolate makers in the US, but the above mentioned companies are those that employ a sizable amount of people and offer good jobs with benefits. If you can buy locally made chocolates that employ people in your area, that is even better for your community.

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