In partnership with Unilever, Cargill donates 10,000 bars of soap to cocoa farmers
May 27, 2020
In partnership with Unilever, 10,000 bars of soap have been delivered to farmer organizations in the Ivory Coast. We have also distributed soaps and hand towels to 30,000 cocoa farmers in Ghana. We are further sensitizing farmers on hand washing protocols, by displaying educational COVID-19 posters at buying stations frequented by farmers in Ghana and have set up 316 “veronica buckets” there. These buckets have a tap fixed at the bottom and a bowl at the bottom to collect wastewater, and serve as a simple way to encourage proper hand washing using flowing water.
In addition to the above measures, Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate has been actively engaging in a number of community response efforts:
The health and safety of partner cocoa farmers
Shortly after COVID-19 appeared in West African countries, cooperative leaders and cocoa farmers we work with in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana received information from Cargill’s digital farming tool helping amplify government measures around safety and sanitation in support of proactively curbing the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Farmers and their communities are at the heart of the industry, and this technology is a means to helping keep them safe in such an unprecedented crisis.
Furthermore. we have made a significant financial contribution to an initiative led by the World Cocoa Foundation, where all the funds will be given to leading international relief organizations operating on the ground, in line with national emergency plans being developed by the origin governments.
Impact on our Cargill Cocoa Promise program
With regards to the implementation of our Cargill Cocoa Promise program in the field, we have established a small core team to guide discussions around more urgent, short term prevention and also medium-term capacity building and mitigation activities. In general, we have requested that NGO implementing partners (CARE, ICI, Save The Children) re-allocate available capacity to prioritize WASH (Wash, Hygiene & Sanitation) related activities, where applicable. This includes mobilizing women’s groups through digital trainings and sensitization. Furthermore, we have supported initiatives to supply soap to farmer groups and distribute food in communities where we operate (see below). Some 1-1 coaching and training activities can continue as planned – but always with people safety as a first priority.
Wider support in West Africa
In addition to supporting partner cocoa farmers, we are also taking steps to help the wider community. For instance Cargill in Ghana has provided food items - including bags of rice, noodles, tomato paste and vegetable oil - to over 1000 families in different communities in Tema where we operate. We are also taking steps to protect daily workers (those unloading cocoa for instance) and contractors on site by providing them with food, so they do not need to buy it in the street. Additionally, we have organized private transportation for all our employees, contractors and daily workers, so they can avoid contamination in public transportation.
Our sourcing and processing operations in West Africa are continuing as usual, and there is no disruption to supply, but we will be monitoring the situation closely. Our stock position remains strong throughout our supply chain and we will continue to monitor this with our teams in origin countries on a continuous basis.
Community response efforts in Europe
Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate has also taken action to provide relief in the countries we operate in across Asia, North America, Brazil and Europe.
Specifically in Europe, for instance, our Smet chocolate factory donated 400 boxes of chocolate eggs which were then repackaged into +/- 700 smaller bags and distributed to home nursing organizations in Belgium. In the Netherlands, we sponsored the chocolate for one of our clients, to produce one million chocolates that they donated to medical staff to say thank you. And in the United Kingdom, we have donated 900 kilos of chocolate to Autism Plus in North Yorkshire.
Meanwhile globally, Cargill at large has committed USD $35 million to COVID-19 relief and recovery through financial donations in our operating communities, grants to national, regional and global partners, as well as product and ingredient donations including over one million pounds of food. Find out more about Cargill’s community relief efforts worldwide here: www.cargill.com/news/supporting-our-communities-during-the-coronavirus-pandemic
You can read more on Cargill’s global response to COVID-19 here: https://www.cargill.com/story/cargills-response-to-the-covid-19-global-pandemic