Cargill pursues progress towards a transparent cocoa sector
Company is realizing supply chain traceability, empowering cocoa farmers, and tackling pressing issues such as deforestation using the power of technology
Schiphol, The Netherlands (28 May 2019) – Cargill’s 2017/2018 Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate Sustainability Report highlights the work being done every day to improve the lives of farmers and their communities in five origin countries where the company sources cocoa—Brazil, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Indonesia.
“This sustainability report highlights how we are taking action on a range of issues across the cocoa sector, while maintaining a farmer-first approach. It is vital that everything we do creates lasting benefits for cocoa farmers, their families and communities, and empowers them to own their futures and achieve success as small businesses while protecting our planet,” said Harold Poelma, president of Cargill’s cocoa & chocolate business.
The company is focused on achieving a more transparent supply chain and implementing scalable solutions through technology and evidence-based approaches. Recent actions have focused on building the capacity of local farmers, improving traceability in the supply chain, increasing access to training and educational resources for cocoa households, professionalizing farming and protecting natural resources.
Key milestones over the past year include:
- Providing Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) training and coaching to over 200,000 cocoa farmers worldwide. In Côte d’Ivoire, Cargill has seen GAP adoption rates double (from 14% to 28%), with farmers able to boost their productivity and manage their farms more sustainably.
- GPS polygon mapping of more than 110,000 farmers and the assessment of 188,065 hectares of forest within Cargill’s direct cocoa supply chain (in partnership with Global Forest Watch). This work establishes a baseline identifying where the cocoa comes from, which areas may be at risk of deforestation and how to mitigate this risk through specific interventions.
- Completed full needs assessments in 137 new communities in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana. As a result, these communities are currently developing Community Action Plans (CAPs), which enable their leaders to evaluate local needs, identify available resources or areas for development, and define their path forward.
Technology plays a vital role in informing and accelerating Cargill’s impact in cocoa sourcing regions. Using digital payments, farmers are able to receive secure, timely payment for their beans, while Cargill’s digital Cooperative Management System ensures that farmers and farmer organizations are empowered to manage their operations like businesses.
The integration of technology across the supply chain also drives greater trust and transparency from cocoa bean to chocolate bar. Data from the deployment of GPS polygon mapping and electronic bean tracking solutions inform how Cargill designs and deploys its sustainability programs, in turn helping customers deliver on consumer demands for ethically sourced products.
This year’s report reflects Cargill’s comprehensive approach to sustainability, which considers multiple distinct yet interconnected issues and encourages collaboration between stakeholders to achieve a thriving cocoa sector. The report highlights progress made on the company’s five Sustainability Goals, aligned to the UN Sustainability Development Goals and adopted by Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate in 2017. These sustainability goals are part of the Cargill Cocoa Promise: the company’s corporate commitment to improving the lives of cocoa farmers and their communities.
“It is our belief that the journey towards sustainable business practices is far greater than the actions or interests of any one company. By partnering up with other organizations and playing to our individual strengths we can achieve fundamental and lasting transformation, together,” added Mr Poelma.
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Cargill is committed to providing food, ingredients, agricultural solutions, and industrial products to nourish the world in a safe, responsible, and sustainable way. Sitting at the heart of the supply chain, we partner with farmers and customers to source, make and deliver products that are vital for living.
Our 160,000 team members innovate with purpose, providing customers with life’s essentials so businesses can grow, communities prosper, and consumers live well. With 159 years of experience as a family company, we look ahead while remaining true to our values. We put people first. We reach higher. We do the right thing—today and for generations to come. For more information, visit Cargill.com and our News Center.
About Cargill’s global cocoa and chocolate business
Cargill’s cocoa and chocolate business offers the food industry a wide range of both standard and customized cocoa and chocolate ingredients for use in delicious bakery, confectionery and dairy applications all over the world. The company’s product range includes high quality Gerkens® cocoa powders, chocolate, coatings, fillings, cocoa liquors and cocoa butters. With years of experience in technical food expertise Cargill supports its customers in new recipes and new product development.
Cargill’s processing plants in Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Côte d’Ivoire, France, Germany, Ghana, Indonesia, the Netherlands, UK and the USA are in full compliance with the highest food safety standards.
To secure a good quality and sustainable supply of cocoa beans, Cargill has its own cocoa bean sourcing operations for buying, handling and exporting of cocoa beans in Brazil, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Indonesia. Presence in all the leading producing countries allows Cargill to oversee the supply chain from beans at origin to cocoa and chocolate products on its customers’ doorsteps. In addition, extensive market research and analysis proves to be a source of valuable information to customers.
More information is available at www.cargillcocoachocolate.com/
About Cargill Cocoa Promise
We launched the Cargill Cocoa Promise in 2012 to align our efforts in origin countries. It is our commitment to improving the livelihoods of farmers and communities in a holistic way that will secure a thriving sector for generations to come. The origin countries include Brazil, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Indonesia.