Canadian Children Marched To Protest The Rising Price Of Candy

Canadian Children Marched To Protest The Rising Price Of Candy

In 1947, World War II was done, but not all was right with the world. With wartime subsidies at an end, the price of cocoa had risen, and Canadian retailers raised the price of each candy bar from 5 cents to 8 cents. 

And so, in Ladysmith, a small town in British Columbia, a group of schoolchildren started The Chocolate Bar Strike. Their cause spread across the country, with kids and teens marching with signs, demanding the price of chocolate come back down. Hundreds of children stormed one local legislature building, and one protest (adorably referred to in the news as a "bicycle parade") obstructed traffic for two hours. 

The protesters also led a nationwide boycott of chocolate bars. Pedantic side note: If you stop buying something because it's too expensive, that generally doesn't qualify as a boycott (or a strike). Similarly, if you decline to buy a product because you don't think it's a good product, that too isn't really a boycott, it's just the market responding. But whatever you call this movement, chocolate sales really did plummet, even more than you'd expect from such a big price increase. 

The climax of The Chocolate Bar Strike was a march of 500 students in Toronto, sponsored by a group called the National Federation of Labour Youth. And this was also the end of the strike, because a newspaper described the National Federation of Labour Youth as a bunch of communists, so everyone thought it best to abandon this dangerous cause. That accusation was ... actually accurate. The NFLY was a continuation of the Young Communist League, and it formed because Canada banned the original organization.

However, chocolatiers nationwide did give in to the kids' demands, kind of. They reduced their prices by a penny, down to seven cents. Hooray! Victory is sweet (and often nutty and chewy). 

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