17 Best Ethical Chocolate Brands You Can't Say No To
Have a sweet tooth? Put it to good use with these top ethical chocolate brands that put the planet first without compromising on taste.
Mon 8 Feb 2021
Mainstream chocolate might be cheap but it's full of ingredients we're best off avoiding - from refined sugar to palm oil.
Farming the latter has been responsible for deforestation and destroying some of the most biodiverse places on earth like Papa New Guinea.
Thankfully the last few years have seen an explosion in ethical chocolate brands.
Ethical chocolate means that the chocolate has been grown, farmed, and produced with the planet in mind and the company has treated the cocoa growers and farmers fairly. Also, look for:
- Single origin cacao that supports small farmers
- Fairtrade growers owning their own chocolate brand
- Rainforest Alliance or Soil Association certified organic ingredients
- Superfood sprinklings
- A high percentage of cacao - the higher the percentage the less sugar and other ingredients it will have in it
- Refined sugar-free
- Vegan chocolate (which is dairy-free)
17 Ethical Chocolate Brands You Can't Say No To
1. Doisy & Dam
Sometimes a little ethical chocolate hit is all you need. We love Doisy & Dam's dark, vegan friendly chocolate that's palm oil free.
Their cocoa supplier is based in Colombia and is a family run company that's over 100 years old who have pioneered paying fairly and upskilling farmers for decades. The premium price Doisy & Dam pay goes to support empowerment programmes to support the indigenous community, such as a training programme for entrepreneurs in sustainable, income-generating initiatives.
The range now includes vanilla and cacao nib bars, smooth salted truffles, crunchy Ballers and sugar-coated D&Ds, all of which is delicious.
2. Tony’s Chocolonely
Chocolate that fights to end slavery gets a big thumbs up from us and that’s what Tony’s Chocolonely is all about. The brand creates exquisite chocolate to raise awareness of exploitation, child labour and slavery within the cocoa industry.
If you’re going vegan, try Dark Almond & Sea Salt otherwise the Dark Milk Pretzel Toffee is a real treat.
3. Cocoa Loco
Cocoa Loco know the importance of giving cocoa farmers a fair wage for their crop. They get their cocoa beans from a community of small-scale farmers from the Dominican Republic who are supported and certified by the Fairtrade Foundation and Soil Association.
You can’t go wrong with a Dark Chocolate Chilli & Lime bar. Other treats include hot chocolate spoons and truffles.
Always a favourite with the pebble team, Kenyan grower and farmer-owned Divine have launched an organic, vegan-friendly dark chocolate range that’s perfect for snuggling up on the sofa with.
It’s made using beans from smallholder farms in São Tomé in West Africa which is known as the ‘Chocolate Island.’ It’s rich, smooth and well, divine. Try the Turmeric and Ginger bar for an earthy, spicy chocolate hit.
5. Seed & Bean
We love chocolate that does good as well as it tastes good and Seed & Bean ticks both those boxes. These guys scored 100% ethical accreditation in the Ethical Company Index thanks to being handmade using British botanicals along with Fairtrade and organic certified beans.
Each bar has fully recyclable and compostable packaging. Tuck into unusual flavours like Milk Chocolate Cornish Sea Salt & Lime.
6. Love Cocoa
Love Cocoa was set up by James Cadbury, a distant relation of the original chocolate man, Mr Cadbury. James wants to being back passion and authenticity to chocolate making.
We love their beautifully designed chocolate boxes almost as much as the chocolate itself.
Most of all, we’re impressed by the brand’s ‘one bar, one tree’ initiative which sees one tree planted for every bar sold. In 2020, they planted over 500k trees in Cameroon.
Try the Salted Almond Dark Chocolate Bar for a delicious fix that comes in recyclable and compostable packaging.
7. Chocolate and Love
Chocolate and Love make organic, award-winning and Fairtrade chocolate that’s vegan, high in cocoa and low in sugar.
Each bar is made using fully traceable cocoa and the wrappers it comes in contains 100% sustainably sourced materials that are biodegradable and compostable.
Try the Panama for a dark chocolate hit or go for the Coffee with Arabica coffee.
8. Luisa’s Vegan Chocolates
Luisa’s Vegan Chocolates cut out the middlemen by making their chocolate from bean to bar. Luisa roasts, grinds and conches the beans into a cocoa liquoir herself before tempering the chocolate to ensure maximum quality of flavour.
The brand also has a Direct Trade Policy which means they work directly with the farmers and pay them at least double the standard market rate. We love the Vegan Salted Caramel Truffle Box. Available from Melted Inside.
Rawr satisfies sweet tooth cravings with an extra health kick with their range of raw chocolate bars.
Raw here means chocolate made at low temperatures to preserve enzymes and it’s considered to be a superfood.
Better still, all Rawr chocolate is certified 100% organic by the Soil Association and Fairtrade. The packaging is 100% recyclable too. Try the Organic Orange for a moreish taste.
The best chocolate is made from the highest quality ingredients and Montezuma’s absolutely nails it.
The brand operates on a Trading Fairly policy which means that they work to create sustainable cocoa production through education and investment in local communities.
They’re also on track to gaining B Corp accreditation and they’ve set themselves a target to be carbon neutral by 2025.
If you’re feeling adventurous, try the Absolute Black with 100% cocoa.
11. Wunder Workshop
Wunder Workshop believes in ‘consumption with a purpose’ which is why their raw chocolate bars aren’t just good to eat but good for you too. This chocolate has been nutrition expert approved.
On top of that, all ingredients are ethically sourced and they avoid mono-cultural farms wherever possible in favour of wild-harvesting.
We recommend the Golden Turmeric Bliss Bar for a relaxing treat.
12. Pump Street
Pump Street is an award-winning bakery that’s since ventured into chocolate making from beans imported directly from single estates and cooperatives around the world.
All the packaging they use is fully compostable to be as kind to the planet as possible.
We like the Jamaica - Bachelor’s Hall Estate 75% which is decadent and rich with hints of berry and rum.
13. Waitrose No. 1
For ethical chocolate in the supermarkets, Waitrose own label hits the spot perfectly. No.1 uses Fairtrade single-origin chocolate throughout its range.
We love the Milk Chocolate with Coconut & Lime made with cocoa beans from the Dominican Republic.
Another favourite is the Dark Chocolate with Orange & Almond is made with cocoa beans from Ecuador and flavoured with chopped Italian almonds and orange oil.
14. Booja Booja
Booja Booja makes organic, and vegan dark chocolate truffles to die for.
They have just introduced two new flavours (hello Honeycomb Caramel and Toffee Strudel) in their stand out pretty boxes.
We challenge you to give these away to friends and family without cracking them open. A real end of the month treat.
15. Original Beans
The area of Selva Zoque has been growing cacao for 4,000 years, it’s also Mexico’s largest rainforest. Climate positive chocolatiers Original Beans has launched a vegan-friendly bar that uses these heritage beans to create Zoque 88% Spirited Dark Chocolate.
Each bar purchased sees new trees planted and the indigenous Zoque and Tzotzil tribes supported. Plus it’s delicious.
16. Eat Your Hat
We can't have an ethical chocolate list without including Eat Your Hat, from Traidcraft. Apart from anything else, the Milk Chocolate with Sri Lankan Cardamom is a must-eat, whether you've got a hat or not.
The seven strong thin milk and dark chocolate (the latter is vegan) range comes from small farmers in São Tomé, Peru, Dominican Republic and Bolivia is all Fairtrade, organic and delicious.
17. Raw Halo
Raw, dairy-free and vegan friendly, Raw Halo, certainly shines bright for those who want purely plant-based chocolate. And with flavours like Dark + Ginger + Pecan and Dark + Mint, you're certainly not missing out on a feeling of bliss when you crack open a bar.
Made from organic raw Peruvian cacao, organic coconut sugar and other natural, plant-based ingredients, dare we say this is a healthier option?
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