February 26th, 2014


Thursday 27 February at 2100 GMT / 2200 CET


Two years after CNN shone a light on the issue of child labour involved in the chocolate industry  in “Chocolate’s Child Slaves”, correspondent Richard Quest fronts a new CNN Freedom Project documentary, ‘Cocoa-nomics’, from the cocoa plantations of the Ivory Coast.

It’s a journey that takes him in search of progress in the fight against child labour, which ultimately has its roots embedded in poverty. Following the supply chain from bean to bar, Quest examines the collective efforts to reform the cocoa industry – the fundamental socio-economic solutions needed to secure a sustainable future for cocoa farming and the chocolate industry.

His travels coincide with a country-visit from Nestlé’s Executive Vice President, José Lopez – a key figure within the $110 billion chocolate industry. ‘Cocoa-nomics’ offers viewers an insight into the company’s operations, in the country where it sources its key commodity. This is rare opportunity to witness the complicated dynamic between the world’s biggest food corporation and the thousands of farmers who grow its cocoa.

As the global demand for chocolate rises, so does the threat to the supply of cocoa. It’s a pivotal time in the development of the cocoa economy in West Africa, for the industry, and the next generation of cocoa farmers.

Mike McCarthy, Senior Vice President, Programming at CNN International said: “When the CNN Freedom Project first reported on the dynamics of child labour in Ivory Coast, it was not enough to do a standalone report. By drawing the line from poverty to profit, ‘Cocoa-nomics’ explores how progress has been made in the effort to combat child labour. By following up our original documentary, we continue to evolve The Freedom Project’s core mission from not raising awareness but to driving effective change.”



Cocoa farmers taste chocolate for first time
‘Cocoa-nomics’: The issue of child labour
‘Cocoa-nomics’: Certified child free cocoa


Cocoa-nomics: A CNN Freedom Project Documentary’ first airs Thursday 27 February at 2100 GMT / 2200 CET.


Following the first airing of the documentary, CNN will broadcast a special half-hour panel debate hosted by Richard Quest, on the topic of child labour and the industry’s commitment in fighting against it, at 2130 GMT / 2230 CET.

The panel debate includes the following contributors:

  • Nick Weatherill, Execuive Director, International Cocoa Initiative
  • Guy Ryder, Director General of the International Labour Organisation
  • Ben Skinner: (NYC) An investigative reporter who has looked extensively at modern-slavery inside supply chains, Skinner recently helped launch a new investment firm that generates returns by fixing global supply chains.


‘Cocoanomics’ can also be seen at the following times:

Thursday 27 February at 2100 GMT / 2200 CET
Friday 28 February at 0400 GMT / 0500 CET and 1030 GMT / 1130 CET
Saturday 1 March at 1400 GMT / 1500 CET and 1130 GMT / 1230 CET
Sunday 2 March at 1030 GMT / 1130 CET and 1930 GMT / 2030 CET
Monday 3 March at 0100 GMT / 0200 CET, 0430 GMT / 0530 CET and 0830 GMT / 0930 CET
Wednesday 5 March at 1730 GMT / 1830 CET


About The CNN Freedom Project

The CNN Freedom Project produces original reports, articles, and documentaries on human trafficking in all of its forms – from debt bondage in India to sex trafficking rings in Southern California and African slaves in the Sinai desert.  In addition, the production team curates digital resources with information on global advocacy groups working against human slavery.  Users of can find details on how to support or volunteer with anti-slavery organizations, watch CNN Freedom Project videos, and read in-depth articles and behind-the-scenes reporters’ notebook stories from the journalists reporting for CNN Freedom Project investigations.  The CNN Freedom Project has generated more than 300 stories of modern-day slavery from across five continents.  Lisa Cohen and Leif Coorlim produce for the CNN Freedom Project, which is overseen by CNN International’s senior vice president for programming, Mike McCarthy.  Many notable figures in the fight against human trafficking have partnered with the CNN Freedom Project since its launch, including Nick Cannon, Common, Emmanuel Jal, Anil Kapoor, Demi Moore, and Mira Sorvino.

About CNN International

CNN’s portfolio of news and information services is available in five different languages across all major TV, internet and mobile platforms reaching more than 375 million households around the globe. CNN International, awarded “News Channel of the Year” by the Royal Television Society in 2013 and 2014, is the number one international TV news channel according to all major media surveys across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, the Asia Pacific region and Latin America. The CNN digital network is consistently one of the top news and current affairs destination on the web. CNN has 44 editorial offices and more than 1,100 affiliates worldwide through CNN Newsource. CNN International is part of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner company.


Andrea Crasselt
CNN International Press Office – Germany, Austria & Switzerland
Turner Broadcasting System Deutschland GmbH
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80802 München
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Twitter: @CNNGermanyPR