Identifying child labor
Identifying children at risk of exploitation in the cocoa supply chain
October 25, 2017
We have established an industry-leading monitoring system to identify and protect children in Cargill’s cocoa supply chain, especially those involved in child labor. Our Cargill Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation System (CLMRS) was launched in 2017. The system was developed in line with best practice with the support of our partner, the International Cocoa Initiative (ICI), which is a leader in child protection in the industry. The initiative also benefits from the support of SOSTECI, the national agency in charge of overall government strategy for child labor monitoring.
We piloted the new system with eight cooperatives in Côte d’Ivoire in 2016/17 and successfully reached 5,000 farmers
The first step of the data collection process is carried out at farmer level. During farm visits, all members of the household are interviewed individually and enrolled in the CLMRS database.
From October 2016 to January 2017, a total 5,177 out of 6,216 targeted farmers were visited and surveyed. The remaining farmers were not available and will be included in the plan for the coming year in order to reach 100% of targeted farmers.
The second step of the process is carried out during an unannounced visit to the farm. All children found in the field during the visit are interviewed to find out why they were in the field and the type of work they participate in. In 2017, 3,525 unannounced farm visits were completed, covering 86% of targeted farmers.
We have found that raising awareness of the causes and consequences of child labor contributes to its prevention. Our CLMRS approach includes two types of training:
Awareness raising sessions for all community members. This session is carried out at the village level through ‘farmer days’, formal cooperative meetings and other training sessions. 83 awareness-raising sessions have so far been conducted, involving 3,370 community members.
Farmer household training and sensitization: At the end of the household survey, the data collector also meets the farmer’s extended family to explain the risk encountered by children involved in hazardous activities.
We will intensify our efforts to tackle child labor in our supply chain through the extension of the CLMRS to include a further nine new cooperatives in 2017-2018, reaching 8,000 more farmers in Côte d’Ivoire.
“With the farms and training schools we’ve had for six years, what we’ve learned is not to make the children work. In the training that followed we’ve learned that a child can accompany you to the field to see what you’re doing, but should not carry heavy loads or grab machetes to clean, this is very dangerous!”
Nick Weatherill, ICI’s Executive Director
"Now I know what hazardous work is for my children, I have to make a big effort to send my children to school next year, in order to give them the possibility of a better future”
Kouadio Yao Gerald, Farmer, Coopapaix H-S Scoops, Bakaridougou