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Chocolate + Carbon = Green

Dark ChocolateFood marketers are quickly becoming key players in marketing sustainability. They’ve demonstrated their own commitment by installing solar panels, bioswales and green roofs; selling wind power credit gift cards at the front end; and even getting consumers involved by promoting reusable shopping bags.

It’s getting tasty, too. One of the more edible stories to cross our desk in recent months is the partnership between supernatural retailer Whole Foods Market; Bloomsberry & Co., a creative packager of premium chocolate; and Terrapass, a carbon offset marketing firm. The brainchild of this collaboration is called Climate Change Chocolate — a product is immediate gratification not only as a food, but as a way consumers can instantly start lessening their environmental impact. It starts with the inner wrapper. Each one depicts, in graphics and words, 15 ways the buyer can reduce his or her carbon footprint. Suggestions include switching off unnecessary lights and using a clothesline instead of a dryer.

And, in case you’re in it just for the chocolate, Terrapass has got you covered. For each consumer purchase, the firm will purchase exactly 133 pounds of verified carbon offsets. Why 133? That’s the current, average per-capita share of global warming emissions Americans create each day (we don’t want to know how). Even the facilities where the chocolate is manufactured have been retooled so they’re operating carbon-neutral when they make the bars.

Whole Foods is enjoying some exclusivity with the chocolates. Participating stores are selling bars with a wind farm motif on the outer box; while other retailers can merchandise them with a footprint logo on the box. Each one retails for $4.95.

Now, if they can just invent a food that will offset the 133 pounds you stand to gain from eating all of this environmentally beneficial chocolate.