Institute for Corporate Responsibility

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The Institute for Corporate Responsibility (ICR) is directed by John Forrer and officially received its charter from the George Washington University in October 2006.

The ICR is devoted to the development and dissemination of scholarship, including research and teaching focused on corporate responsibility. The ICR serves as a vehicle for continuing education, curriculum development, conferences and seminars, which address the needs of the School of Business, the university, and the greater Washington, D.C. community.

The ICR leverages its DMV (District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia) location and serves as a leading resource to the business community by partnering with business associations as well as the policy offices of federal agencies, Congress, local and regional governments, non-governmental organizations, and international organizations.

By developing this university-business-government partnership across the United States and throughout the world, the ICR creates and disseminates knowledge, builds scholarly capacity for our faculty and student, and further develops GW’s global presence.

The aim of the ICR is to become the world’s leading intellectual center for scholarship in the field of corporate responsibility.

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Good Will Chocolate Learning Community Hosts Inaugural Webinar on Sustainable Chocolate Packaging

In the first of many events to come, the Sustainable Chocolate Packaging Webinar, co-hosted by the Institute of Corporate Responsibility at the George Washington University and the Cocoa Research Centre at the University of the West Indies on November 4, 2023, was attended by chocolatiers from Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia as well as Trinidad & Tobago.

Read the summary

The webinar was moderated by Marisol Slater, owner of The Chocolate House D.C., and featured Mark Christian, owner of C-Spot, a website which rates and reviews innumerable chocolates, as a special speaker. Our opening speaker and guest of honor was H.E. Anthony Phillips Spencer, the ambassador of Trinidad and Tobago to the United States.

The ambassador expressed his embassy’s dedication to advocating for and promoting the country's cocoa and chocolate production, emphasizing value and supply chain development in the United States. He highlighted the importance of sustainable practices in the food and beverage industry, including the chocolate-making sector while commending those who have already made strides in sustainable packaging and ethically grown cocoa. During his address, he encouraged chocolatiers to leverage social media and online tools for engagement and public education and also emphasized the potential for collaboration and empowerment of women-owned businesses. He concluded by urging continued efforts to foster a sustainable future for the climate and cocoa and chocolate industries.

Our moderator, Marisol Slater, showcased a diverse array of packaging styles for chocolate bars, each bearing a distinct influence on their visibility on store shelves and their capacity to captivate consumers. The presentation shed light on an assortment of packaging alternatives, encompassing conventional boxes, envelope-style packaging, square wraps, flat envelope-style designs, pouch-style encasements, and transparent, see-through bars. Each packaging style was revealed to possess unique merits, effectively catering to distinct consumer preferences and serving as a vehicle for various branding strategies.

Mark Christian then delved into the evolving world of chocolate packaging, showcasing diverse examples that range from minimalistic and information-light designs to intricately detailed and visually rich ones. They highlighted the shift in packaging styles, noting the influence of lean and clean packaging as well as information-rich, storytelling-driven designs. The speaker emphasized the importance of personal expression for chocolate makers, encouraging them to convey their stories and artistic flair through packaging. Additionally, the discussion extended to boxed assortments, exemplified by renowned brands like Michael Recchiuti and Toloq, which cater to various consumer preferences and evoke nostalgia or luxury, showcasing the breadth of possibilities in chocolate packaging.

A number of questions were raised during the webinar which led to an informative and insightful discussion on topics including FDA approval in the U.S., ways of getting into the U.S. market, consolidating and shortening supply chains by moving production bases to market locations, and more.

Future episodes of our webinar series will feature discussions on sustainable supply chains, sustainable packaging material sources, and the steps involved in getting product to the U.S. market, among other topics.

Please contact Sukriti Mahipal at [email protected] for more information about the Good Will Chocolate Learning Community.


Image shows a fresh cocoa pod opened to reveal cocoa beans inside

ICR Teams with UWI to Launch the Good Will Chocolate Learning Community

The Institute for Corporate Responsibility has partnered with the Cocoa Research Centre at the University of the West Indies (UWI) to launch the Good Will Chocolate Learning Community, an initiative designed to promote the production of more sustainable chocolate and encourage the global chocolate community to share best practices and proven methods for attracting investors.

Learn More About the Good Will Chocolate Learning Community




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