1. What are the corporate business, and individual ethical issues raised by this case?
There are different ethical issues that are mentions in this case and the main issue is child slavery. Corporate ethical issue are seen in this case, different corporate are part of child slavery such as:
? Chocolate Manufactures: they were aware of the slavery happening in the lvory Coast, because they are the ones that buy directly from the farmers. Chocolate manufactures companies like Hershey’s, Twix, Nestle and others, they continue to use the chocolate beans from the middleman. Moreover, these companies fund the establishment of certification system but was reported that the system is unprogressive. (bill)
? Law: are not enforced and there is shortage of enforcement officers. There is widespread of poverty and local officials accept bribes from the slave supplier. All of these problems led to the increase child slavery in lvory coast.
? Middlemen: The names of ADM Co., Barry Callebaut and Cargill Inc., serves as middlemen which they are key part of this industry. They took advantage of the farmers’ inability to provide their trucks to transport the cocoa, who buy the cocoa beans from farmers at half the current market price. After that they grind, process them then sell the processed cocoa to the chocolate manufactures.
? Market price: the drop in the price of cocoa beans, the farmer have to use slavery as a way to suppress the profit loss and their survival.
Furthermore, individuals are also part of ethical issues that is related to child slavery such as:
? Farmers: It is illegal to perform the children slavery, also it against the human rights if we force someone to do something unwillingly. Farmers are physically abusing the children. Force them to do tough tasks, work from sunrise to sunset, they sleep on bare wooden planks. Because of the farmers each year unknown number of children are die or killed.
? Traffickers: they are the ones that kidnapped the young children’s then sell them to farmers to work as salves. They are part of this ethical issue.
? Consumer: they were aware of child slavery, buying product from these companies in somehow they continued patronization of the product causes the problem to still exist.
2. In your view, is the kind of child slavery discussed in this case absolutely wrong no matter what, or is it only relatively wrong (i.e., if one happens to live in a society such as ours that disapproves of child slavery)? Explain your view and why you hold it.
In my opinion, child slavery is absolutely wrong in this case. Although the child slavery is illegal. Children didn’t have personal freedom right. Farmers have treated children in a hasty manner, beaten and starved children to force them to do hard work. Children work from sunrise to sunset, they sleep on bare wooden boards. Every year, unknown numbers of these children die or killed at Choco farms.
( if one happens to live in a society such as ours that disapproves of child slavery)
3. Who shares in the moral responsibility for the slavery occurring in the chocolate industry?
Everybody in this case who knows that this slavery is happening is responsible even just a little portion of it.
• Farmers: implement the slavery method against the children, they know that they shouldn’t do it and it is illegal. Instead of preventing child slavery they continually doing it. The worse part that they are abusing the children.
• African government: are also part is sharing the moral responsibility because they have the control over lvory Coast and they knew about child slavery but doesn’t enforces law to stop it. Also the African government accept bribes.
• Middleman: who buy the slavery made product and sell the processed cocoa to the chocolate manufactures.
• Chocolate companies: are moral responsible, since they are aware of the nature of the cocoa farms. They control over the grievance therefore, they can pressure the farmers to stop child slavery. On the other hand, they didn’t act until this was reveal to all.
• Consumers: who knows the company names and that child slavery happened behind the production, but still bought their product.
4. Consider the bill that Representative Engel and Senator Harkin attempted to enact into a law, but which never became a law because of the lobbying efforts of the chocolate companies. What does this incident show about the view that “to be ethical it is enough for businesspeople to follow the law”?
As it was mentioned in the case, chocolate companies declared that they knew about child slavery issue in Lvory Coast before it was publicizing. As an ethical action they should do something to stop it but no. they didn’t take any action and their aim was to get cocoa beans in low prices.
In 2001 Representative Engel and Senator Harkin introduced a bill, this bill would lead companies to label their product stating that “slave-free”. For the companies to have positive ethical image it will be great to label that but it come with huge responsibility. Companies claims that they don’t know where and whom they buy from. Therefore they resisted to the bill. If the law proposed by Representative Engle and Senator Harkin was being official, then the business of chocolate industry in America would cease and impacted the cocoa business all over the world.
According to my understanding, that not passing this bill shows that if laws aren’t broken then they are free to do what please them in the best interest of their. Beside that this statement “to be ethical it is enough for businesspeople to follow the law”. It is wrong because business people follow the law, but not all of them are ethical. As it shown in the case chocolate companies follow the law but they are unethical with the problem of child slavery. The purpose of a business is maximize the profits, and to raise the company value. To achieve their goals company use any necessary moves under the law. To end this I can say business people don’t care about humanity but only about profit oriented.