When I saw the headline of best-selling writer/marketer Seth Godin’s blog post “Don’t buy cheap chocolate,” it hit me in the heart and added to regrets I already harbor for doing just that — buying and sharing it.
My cheap chocolate story comes from 2008, when we were preparing to travel to India to adopt our son. It was the end of January, so the candy aisles were full of Valentine’s Day chocolates, and I wanted to bring some to give to him and to other children we would encounter.
I stood in the candy aisle going back and forth — recognizing the vast differences in chocolate quality as well as price — and finally compromised with myself. I bought a few packs of the “good” chocolate and a few of the “cheap.” (In defense of my decision-making issues, I was pretty overwhelmed preparing to become a first-time parent in addition to traveling to India!)
Godin’s post argues against cheap chocolate because of the unfair and dangerous labor practices, and environmental concerns involved in its production. I’ll adopt those issues as well, but my personal concern has more to do with the fact that now I know I handed out what I refer to as “crappity McCrap” — food laden with additives that can cause behavioral and other problems. Ugh. (And, confession here, that trip to India wasn’t the last time.)
You could say I got my comeuppance in spades, because I didn’t figure out the additive-behavior connection for several long and challenging years. But now I know what it looks like. Do I ever. (If you’re interested in my family’s healing food journey, the story begins here.)
So there are plenty of reasons to avoid the cheap chocolate this Halloween … whether sharing it or eating it.
As for me, this might be the year I dress up as a teacher — and hand out pencils. Get in line, kids!