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Since 1921, See's Candies has been actively engaged with our communities, striving to support those in need, as well as to target specific causes for support that reach beyond the local communities with which we are involved. From schools to non-profit support groups and charities, we aspire to make a difference through involvement with the various community groups we support.
Examples of current Community Support activities:
Children's Health Council, Palo Alto, California:
Primary sponsor of annual fundraising effort "Summer Symphony". The Children's Health Council specializes in assisting children and their families to overcome specific health and behavioral issues through a variety of interventions. For more information, go to chconline.org.
Stanford Jazz Workshop, Palo Alto, California:
Primary sponsor of the annual workshop series dedicated to jazz education and appreciation. Students from various backgrounds and locations are gathered for summer workshops with jazz professionals to further their understanding and expertise in jazz music. For more information, go to stanfordjazz.org.
Filoli Jazz Series, Woodside, California:
Primary sponsor for the annual fundraising concert series, supporting this non-profit Historical Landmark with 654 acres of public land for community enjoyment. For more information, go to filoli.org.
Sojourn To The Past:
See's Candies has sponsored over 300 high school students from South San Francisco High School to an educational trip centered on the Civil Rights Movement in the United States. This 10-day trip provides a life-changing experience as high school students study the events and locations of many of the transformative civil rights events from the 1960's. For more information, go to sojournproject.com.
World Cocoa Community:
Small cocoa farmers throughout the world earn incomes for their families while providing the cocoa crop that satisfies the world's craving for chocolate. Many organizations are now involved in efforts to improve the yields achieved on these farms, increase the income earned from the crops, and support world labor standards for safety and freedom from oppression. See's Candies, as a member of the World Cocoa Foundation, supports these efforts and encourages the improvement in cocoa farm operations to achieve the end result of improved farmer incomes, consistent worldwide supply, improved farmer and youth education, and the development of sustainable economies.
See's has joined with major chocolate industry companies to directly support two exceptional programs to improve conditions for farmers and youth in cocoa producing regions of Africa. First, the ECHOES program of the World Cocoa Foundation is dedicated to improving the education of youth in the Ghana and Ivory Coast regions of Africa. With additional grants from the US Government, contributions from See's and other program contributors, the program works to improve the education provided to children, with life skills training, teacher training, and functional literacy.
In addition to ECHOES, See's directly supports the Cocoa Livelihoods Program in conjunction with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to provide cocoa farmers with better skills and training to operate cocoa farms in a sustainable fashion, significantly improve farmer incomes, and diversify farming into alternative crops based on market information. For more information on these programs, visit worldcocoafoundation.org.
Worldwide chocolate production in 2010 is roughly 8.1 billion pounds of chocolate, with U.S. production approximately 10% of the world total. See's Candies (ultimately See's customers) purchases approximately 1-2% of the US chocolate production on an annual basis, mostly incorporated into See's famous boxed chocolates.
Efforts to improve the price received by cocoa farmers for their crops are supported by many private and public organizations, resulting in a "fair trade" price for cocoa compared to the basic "market price" found around the world. Recent "fair trade" prices for cocoa beans are generally $1700 per tonne, plus a premium payment of $150 per tonne to support additional grower activities and compensation. "Fair trade cocoa" is certified to comply with a minimum price for the cocoa, enabling small farmers to maintain a minimum income from their crops. Such "fair trade" cocoa produced worldwide currently is estimated at 20-30 million pounds annually, less than 2% of the worldwide cocoa market.
As of mid-2011, the market price for cocoa is nearly $2900/tonne, a 50% increase over the last three years, and well above the "fair trade" value established for the crop.
Fair Trade and Other Certified Cocoa Beans:
In addition to directly supporting the World Cocoa Foundation's ECHOES program and the Cocoa Livelihoods Program, See's also proudly supports sustainable farming and fair labor practices by using a blend of Certified Cocoa Beans in our chocolate. The cocoa beans we use are from Rain Forest Alliance Certified Farms whose mission is to maintain biodiversity and sustainable livelihoods for farmers and workers.
The chocolate that goes into our candy represents 1-2% of the total US chocolate market. In partnering with Rain Forest Alliance Certified Farms, we are committed to using more than twice that percentage share in Certified Cocoa Beans (and plan to use even more as availability increases). Certified beans are now used in See's chocolate at a rate higher than our total share of the US cocoa market.
Pricing in See's Candies Shops may differ from prices shown in catalogs or online. Any offers or prices shown in catalogs and on Sees.com will only apply to orders placed through those selling channels. Pricing and offers are subject to change at any time. All rights reserved.