Mars chocolate is one of the worlds leading chocolate manufacturers and employs more than 13,000 people across 110 sites worldwide. As market leaders in their industry, Mars is constantly in the spotlight. Being responsible in the way they conduct business is part of the reason they are in the highly regarded position that they are in today. The sourcing of cocoa however is currently one the greatest ethical dilemma’s facing not only Mars, but all chocolate companies all over the world.
The importance of international marketing ethics across cultures has been noted by a number of authors (Fletcher & Crawford, 2011; Armstrong & Sweeney, 1994; Singhapakdi, Rawwas, Marta & Ismail, 1999). For …show more content…
This traditional and unique Shinto-based culture of Japan places an emphasis on the individual’s responsibility to society at large, and less emphasis on material goods (Erffmeyer, 1999).
The research conducted by Erffmeyer (1999) continues by reiterating the fact that the modern Japanese consumer will emphasize social responsibility in their personal consumption activities. This research suggests that when approaching the Japanese market, the regular packaging, and advertising campaigns may not be as effective as packaging and campaigns that display Mars’s positive CSR. “Marketers may consider…advertising appeals presented in a traditional context. By associating the consumption of a particular good or service with ethical behaviour, firms, particularily those identified as foreign, may strike a positive chord with Japanese consumers” (Erffemeyer, 1999). From this it is suggested that Mars’s marketing campaign includes advertising and packaging showing that they are a company that does not use child slave labour and that they support numerous foundations to prevent it from occurring. This may be done with ‘Fair Trade Certified’ labels, which is a label consumers recognize as products that have provided a better deal for developing countries farmers, producers and their communities (Fair Trade Association, 2012). The Fair Trade Association is indeed a well-recognized label globally, although, this may not be the best solution.