Only a bit player

“What can I do?” A phrase used by so many of us, unthinkingly, but behind it can lie powerlessness, victimhood and a refusal to take responsibility. What can an individual in Egypt do against the secret police, besides risk torture and death? Logically, not much. But by refusing to take that stand, millions are standing together to take action, and bring change to the country.

While some of the most marginalised individuals in Egypt are taking responsibility, I got a mail in my inbox recently from a giant multinational, doing the direct opposite.

Chocolate purchased from the Ivory Coast is a large source of funds for the army there, backing a brutal regime in a country now on the brink of civil war. A recent call by Avaaz to stop purchasing chocolate from the Ivory Coast was met with a “what can I do” from Unilever, a massive multinational. The key was the line “This is because our suppliers source from many different countries and supply us based on how we want the ingredients to taste rather than where the beans come from.” They’re simply refusing to engage with their suppliers about the issue – an excuse so many others use whether it involves genetically-modified foods, harmful ingredients or dangerous practises.

We all have choices, and our actions make a difference. Our challenge is one of awareness, of mindfulness. We’re not aware of the farmworkers being poisoned when we choose to buy heavily sprayed food, nor are we aware of the flourishing life on an organic farm when we support them. But our choices, in all areas of life, make a difference.

Of chocolate
And, talking of chocolate, we have our full range of raw chocolates back in stock. Euphoria Foiled’s mint and plain, and Gayleen’s orange, ginger and mint flavours are all available again.

And none of it from the Ivory Coast!

For those preferring traditional chocolate bars, we have dark chocolate as well as orange varieties, although stocks are starting to run low and we may not have for a while.

Digestive system
For those looking to get their digestive systems back in shape (perhaps still recovering from festive season over-indulgence), nothing beats eating the right foods.

Sauerkraut is back in stock, and besides being high in Vitamin C, the high bacteria count from the fermentation process work wonders in the gut.

Some spices that are particularly good include ajwain, a superb digestive and also helpful for colic, carraway and fennel seed. Those spices aren’t just for flavour – they have powerful effects on the body as well.

Have a great week, filled with abundant health,
Ian and the Ethical team

To order, head on over to www.ethical.org.za (this time the URL is correct!).