A company registered on the London Stock Exchange’s Alternative Investment Market, United Cacao, stands accused of illegally clearing more than 2,000 hectares of 'mainly primary rainforest' in Peru's northern Amazon to plant cacao. The charges have been made against a United Cacao subsidiary, Cacao del Peru Norte, by NGO Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) in a recent report and Peruvian NGO Sociedad Peruana de Ecodesarrollo in a media statement and photos. United Cacao touts itself as a leading ethical producer, in both labour and environmental terms, and a ‘proud member’ of the World Cocoa Foundation whose stated aim is to promote a ‘sustainable cocoa economy.’ United Cacao's CEO is Dennis Melka. EIA's report accuses another Melka company of clearing 1000s of hectares of primary rainforest elsewhere in Peru for oil palm. For more details see my recent article published in The Guardian. (18-04-2015)

David Hill