For Immediate Release
November 19th, 2015
Andrea Hawman

Chocolate Saving Wildlife Through New Conservation Partnerships

Endangered Species Chocolate’s 10% GiveBack program funds conservation non-profits

INDIANAPOLIS – In the past three years, Endangered Species Chocolate’s (ESC) 10% GiveBack program has donated more than $1.2 million for its carefully chosen beneficiaries. ESC is pleased to announce its 2016-2018 partners: Rainforest Trust and Wildlife Conservation Network (WCN). The organizations will receive 10 percent of ESC’s annual net profits (or a minimum annual donation of $10,000, whichever is greater) to fund projects they deem most important to achieving their conservation goals.

ESC’s mission and values – including using ingredients that meet strict standards for quality, ethical trade and environmental sustainability – translate to the rigorous 10% GiveBack selection process. Partners are chosen based on their aggressive and clear mission to help support species preservation and habitat conservation. Rainforest Trust and WCN have made great strides in their respective goals with a passion that struck a chord with ESC’s staff.

“Aligning with Rainforest Trust and Wildlife Conservation Network is truly a continuation of the great partnerships Endangered Species Chocolate has already had,” CEO Curt Vander Meer said. “We are excited to aid in the missions of these impactful organizations as we welcome them to the ESC family.”

Rainforest Trust has saved more than 11 million acres of tropical forests to-date, but ESC’s 10% GiveBack program will be vital in expediting the organization’s goal of preserving 20 million acres by the year 2020.

“In a world where rainforest destruction has been swift and devastating, it is encouraging to see Endangered Species Chocolate take a stand against habitat destruction,” said Will Thomas, director of media and outreach at Rainforest Trust. “We are excited to work with a company that shares our vision for a healthy planet where endangered species can not only survive, but rebound and thrive.”

WCN funds projects in 24 different countries where the 10% GiveBack program will contribute to helping a myriad of at-risk species.

“Wildlife Conservation Network is thrilled to partner with Endangered Species Chocolate because of their passion for wildlife and mission to save wild animals,” said Tracy Elsen, marketing and communications manager at WCN. “Funds from the 10% GiveBack program will help WCN tackle the current elephant poaching crisis in Africa and provide conservationists with hands-on training that increases their impact.“

In addition to the annual 10% GiveBack donation, partner organizations are featured in every ESC bar wrapper, receive chocolate bars to use at fundraising events, are spotlighted on ESC’s website, featured in articles and included in ESC’s annual Partner Report.

Past 10% GiveBack partners include SEE Turtles, SEEtheWild, Chimp Haven and, most recently, the Xerces Society and African Wildlife Foundation (AWF). As outlined in ESC’s 2015 Partner Report, AWF credits the 10% GiveBack program for making a significant impact on the organization’s counter-poaching and conservation efforts. ESC’s donations have helped AWF fund 31 projects supporting more than a dozen different species around Africa, including increasing protection for 250,000 elephants as well as reaching 350 million people in Asia with campaigns to reduce current ivory and Rhino horn demands. 

“At Endangered Species Chocolate, we feel a responsibility to steward the conservation community,” CEO Curt Vander Meer said. “As we continue to grow the company, we continue to grow our impact. In 2016 we will further this mission by expanding our reach to new consumers and continuing to spread the word about the need for conservation.”


About Endangered Species Chocolate
Indianapolis-based Endangered Species Chocolate (ESC) is a mission-driven company that is passionate about chocolate and the environment. ESC is committed to providing chocolate-lovers with premium, natural chocolates that are ethically traded and sustainably grown. Adding to the impact of each chocolate bar, ESC donates 10 percent of net profits to fund species and habitat conservation. A top selling brand in the natural food category, ESC offers more than 30 products. For more information, visit