Buy ethical, end exploitation

Picture of a boy opening a cocoa pod
More than 70% of the world’s cocoa supply comes from West Africa – where children are often forced to harvest cocoa in dangerous conditions.

In a world where businesses and consumers rely on international goods and services, there are many ways in which we may unknowingly support and further the use of forced, child and trafficked labour.

Fortunately, there are plenty of ethical alternatives. As a consumer, there’s a lot you can do to end exploitation. Read all about what you can do in our fact sheet, Forced and child labour is everyone’s business (pdf).

Or join our Don’t Trade Lives campaign.

Here are just a few of the industries where forced, child and trafficked labour is an issue to watch out for:

The storm in your tea cup

After water, tea is the most popular drink in the world. The industry involves about 50 million people worldwide. But conditions for tea workers are not always fair.

Read our fact sheet about Labour exploitation in the global tea industry (pdf)

Coffee’s Hidden Kick

Australians drink more than one billion cups of coffee each year. More than 90 percent of coffee production takes place in developing countries. It is an industry that relies on cheap labour; often farmers are not paid a decent wage for their product.

Read our fact sheet about Labour exploitation in the global coffee industry  (pdf).

Chocolate’s bitter taste

More than 70% of the world’s cocoa supply comes from West Africa – where children are often forced to harvest cocoa in dangerous conditions. Their labour goes into much of the chocolate we buy in Australia.

Read our fact sheet about Forced child and trafficked labour in the cocoa industry (pdf).

Palm oil – hidden destruction

Palm oil is found in food, cosmetics, confectionary and cleaning products. While the harvesting of palm oil is criticised for the environmental damage it causes, forced and child labour also taints the industry.

Read our fact sheet about Forced, child and trafficked labour in the palm oil industry (pdf).

Cottoning on to exploitation

Cotton is one of the most common crops in the world. Exploitative child labour is found at every stage of its production – from the cultivation of the cottonseed, to the harvesting of the crop, to the processing of the raw material into threads; and finally, the manufacturing of clothes we wear.

Read our fact sheet about Forced and child labour in the cotton industry (pdf).

Tainted technology

Intense competition to provide customers with the latest electronic devices at a cheap price fuels the global electronics industry. When we benefit from the latest technology, we often don’t think about how it is made. This includes the forced and child labour often used to mine the minerals needed to make electronic components – and the exploited labourers that manufacture the products themselves.

Read our fact sheet about Forced and child labour in the technology industry (pdf).

Fishy business

Australia imports over 200,000 tonnes of seafood each year. A lot of seafood comes from Asia, where men are often trafficked onto fishing boats and many women and children are forced to endure exploitation in fish processing factories.

Read our fact sheet about Trafficking and labour exploitation in the global fishing industry (pdf).

Behind the Bling

Throughout the world, there are widespread reports of forced and child labour being used in the mining of jewellery’s raw materials. Further down the supply chain, children are used in jewellery production, to cut and polish gem stones, as well as make jewellery.

Read our fact sheet about Forced and child  labour in the jewellery industry (pdf).

Resources

  • A storm in your tea cup: labour exploitation in the global tea industry
    Open pdf >
  • Good Coffee Guide to Australia
    Open pdf >
  • Coffee's Hidden Kick: Labour exploitation in the global coffee industry
    Open pdf >
  • Behind the Bling: Forced and Child Labour in the Global Jewellery Industry
    Open pdf >
  • Ethical chocolate scorecard
    Open pdf >
  • Understanding human trafficking - fact sheet
    Open pdf >
  • Trafficking and sexual exploitation - fact sheet
    Open pdf >
  • Trafficking and labour exploitation in the global fishing industry - fact sheet
    Open pdf >
  • Forced, child and trafficked labour in the palm oil industry - fact sheet
    Open pdf >
  • Forced, child and trafficked labour in the cocoa industry - fact sheet
    Open pdf >
  • Forced and child labour is everyone's business - fact sheet
    Open pdf >
  • Forced and child labour in the technology industry - fact sheet
    Open pdf >
  • Forced and child labour in the cotton industry - fact sheet
    Open pdf >
  • Forced, child and trafficked labour - A corporate responsibility fact sheet
    Open pdf >
  • Child Protection and Trafficking - A5 flyer
    Open pdf >
  • Do you stock ethical products - a card to give to businesses
    Open pdf >
  • Our Guilty Pleasure - Exploitative Child Labour in the Chocolate Industry - Full Report
    Open pdf >
  • Our Guilty Pleasure - Exploitative Child Labour in the Chocolate Industry - Report Summary
    Open pdf >
  • Addressing labour exploitation in supply chains - guidelines for business
    Open pdf >
See all resources

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