Resources for Building an Anti-Racist Workplace in Cacao and Chocolate

While it is clear that we are just at the beginning of a long road ahead towards a more self-aware, equitable, and anti-racist chocolate industry, we have been inspired and activated by the conversations that have started.

As we listen to and learn from Black, Indigenous, and People of Color across our industry and beyond, we have begun engaging in the work within Uncommon Cacao. We are grappling with questions about the rules of capitalism and what we have historically thought of as systems change. We are questioning our structure and model in weekly anti-racist dialogues and diving into uncomfortable conversations around company culture and whiteness. We are in the process of developing policies, practices, and commitments that will shape how we act in the future. We look forward to sharing these with you all soon.

In the spirit of collective learning, we wanted to share some resources that have been particularly helpful for us so far:

JEDI Collaborative: Mentioned by Anjuli in Friday’s Chocolate Noise session, this initiative from the natural foods industry establishes clear frameworks within which companies can work and make commitments.

Addressing anti-blackness in specialty coffee by Umeko Motoyoshi: http://www.biocaf.com/post/addressing-anti-blackness-in-specialty-coffee

How to address racism (from a coffee company perspective): http://digest.jennchen.com/issues/how-to-handle-racism-as-a-company-252356

Dismantling racism for organizations: https://www.dismantlingracism.org/analysis-tools.html

White supremacy culture characteristics: https://www.showingupforracialjustice.org/white-supremacy-culture-characteristics.html

Identifying active and passive racism: https://www.pcc.edu/illumination/wp-content/uploads/sites/54/2018/05/active-passive-racism-anti-racism-exercise.pdf

Guidelines for having productive conversations about race as a company: https://qz.com/work/1867066/how-to-have-productive-conversations-about-race-at-the-office/

Harvard Implicit Bias test: https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/takeatest.html

Books:
How to be an Anti-Racist by Ibram X Kendi
Me & White Supremacy by Layla F Saad — also a fantastic workbook for self-reflection
Winners Take All by Anand Giridharadas
Freedom is a Constant Struggle by Angela Davis
Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
How We Get Free by Keeanga Yamahtta Taylor

Viewing list:
13th (Netflix)
When They See Us (Netflix)
The Hate U Give (Amazon Prime)
Just Mercy (Amazon Prime)
Self-Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam CJ Walker (Netflix)

We hope that this is a helpful collection of resources to support your internal work for yourself and at your organization. We also want to emphasize how important it is for White people not to ask Black, Brown, Indigenous and/or People of Color to teach them or tell them which resources they should use. The list we have compiled here represents just the tip of the iceberg of resources that are available to you; it is up to each of us to do our own research and work to identify and learn from the plentiful educators, readings, and other resources.

We look forward to continuing to share what we’re learning and doing, and we hope to hear from you too!

We source quality cacao. We build authentic, long-term relationships across the supply chain to create stability and success for all.