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Byline: Bob Fernandez
PHILADELPIA _ Hershey Foods Corp., the nation's largest chocolate-maker, is "shocked" and "deeply concerned" that its products, such as Hershey's Kisses, Nuggets, chocolate bars and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups may be tainted by slave labor, a company official said.
Hershey said it would help fund a study of labor practices on 2,000 cocoa farms in Ivory Coast and 1,000 farms in Ghana. There are more than 600,000 cocoa farms in Ivory Coast.
The U.S. Department of Labor and the U.S. Agency for International Development will coordinate the study.
Revelations of indirect involvement with child slavery could be deeply embarrassing to Hershey, which has a long history of aiding children in the United States. Hershey Foods is controlled by a school for orphaned and disadvantaged children, established in 1909 by company …