World Cocoa Foundation Sets Guiding Sustainability Principles

World Cocoa Foundation Sets Guiding Sustainability Principles

The World Cocoa Foundation, which has been pushing for sustainability in the cocoa industry since 2000, has developed a series of sustainability principles and goals to prioritize its activities, assist cocoa farmers and guide industry efforts.

The foundation is made up of about 60 member companies large and small, including Hershey, Mars, Starbucks, Jelly Belly, Kraft, Ghirardelli, Dagoba, See's and Chocolove.

The principles and goals were developed over the last two years with input from more than 50 of the foundation's members, and they cover profit, people and the planet.

Regarding the plant, the foundation wants to see more responsible and sound environmental stewardship in place at coca farms and in surrounding communities, including responsible soil and water use, rational use of agro-chemicals and implementation of Integrated Pest Management, a strategy that combines various methods with the goal of reducing pesticide use. Another planet-related goal include making sure all stakeholders understand, respect and value the benefits of biodiversity and environmental assets.

In the area of profit, the principles call for improved and equitable economic returns for farmers, ensuring productive farming practices are in place, using diversification as a tool for good farm management and developing an efficient and transparent cocoa value chain.

Lastly, when it comes to people, the goals include implementing national and international labor standards, safe farming practices, and strong and effective farmer organizations.

The principles will guide the foundations current and future programs, which are in place in West Africa, Southeast Asia and the Americas.