We believe that a prerequisite for making real progress on sustainability is ensuring maximum transparency and traceability across the cocoa supply chain.
Cocoa and chocolate producers are also facing increasing public and media scrutiny. Stakeholders of all kinds rightly want to know that companies like Cargill are taking action on priority issues such as child labor, deforestation, and farmer prosperity. As one of the leading companies in the cocoa sector, we are often asked about the progress we are making.
We are also seeing increasing consumer demand for ethically-sourced products. Consumers all over the world want to know that the products they purchase are produced in a sustainable manner, and our customers are looking to us to help them meet this demand.
Transparency is not an end in its own right, but rather a means to drive a cycle of progress. The most pressing issues in the cocoa sector reveal why this is the case.
Ending deforestation and mitigating climate change
Our changing climate has a significant impact on cocoa. Climatic shifts are predicted to impact cocoa farmers’ productivity, having knock-on effects on livelihoods and the wellbeing of their families and communities. As we measure the interplay among cocoa production, land use and climate, we are developing mechanisms that deter farmers from encroaching into at-risk or protect forests and deploy resources to help them adapt as the climate changes.
Preventing child labor
We are working daily to address child labor in the cocoa supply chain. We have co-developed and are implementing our Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation System (CLMRS), which works with trusted partners in communities. For example, the system identifies cocoa farms where families cannot afford to hire help to do farm work and so have put their children to work. Measuring this allows us to enact interventions that support families so they keep their children in school.
Increased transparency fosters confidence among our customers that we are identifying the most important issues and making progress to resolve them. It aids us in determining where our efforts are having the greatest impact, allowing us to refine our approach. To learn more on how Cargill is advancing traceability and transparency across its supply chains, click here.
If not mentioned elsewise, all West Africa photos in relation to sustainability are by Sandrine Bénitah « @Sandrine Bénitah »