(Seattle, WA) – On Thursday, February 14 – Valentine’s Day - workers and their community allies will be gathering for a “Have a Heart, Theo’s!” event at 11 a.m. at the Westlake Whole Foods in Seattle to inform consumers about how Seattle-based chocolatier, Theo Chocolate, managed to obtain fair trade certification even after the company hired a union-busting consulting firm, terminated a union leader, and engaged in numerous other violations of workers’ rights during a 2010 organizing drive.
The event coincides with the recent publication of an International Labor Rights Forum (ILRF) report, Aiding and Abetting, that exposes how the IMO (Institute for Marketecology), a Swiss group that certifies that companies uphold fair trade standards, branded Theo Chocolate with its Fair for Life certification despite being informed by Theo workers that the company was violating international labor standards.
Workers will have giant-sized “Theo is Heartless” chocolate bars on display, and they will be passing out genuine fair trade chocolate from a heart-shaped piñata.
Brenda Wiest, Contract Campaign Coordinator - Teamsters Local 117
Mackenzie Jahnke, terminated Theo Chocolate worker
Stacie Ford-Bonnelle, Fair Trade Seattle
Washington Fair Trade Coalition
Community Alliance for Global Justice
United Students Against Sweatshops
“HAVE A HEART, THEOS!” VALENTINE’S DAY EVENT
Thursday, February 14, 2013 11 a.m.
Westlake Whole Foods
2210 Westlake Ave. Seattle, WA 98121
View a PDF of this press advisory.