Zero Child Labor
By 2025, we will eradicate child labor from our supply chain.
Lifting farmers out of poverty is the starting point to end child labor. However, a structural solution to eradicating child labor also requires access to quality education, awareness raising, monitoring, and, if any cases of the worst forms of child labor are detected, remediation. You can see this approach in action in our work in Tanzania where we are partnering with a customer to school 65,000 children. In addition, We trained over 20,000 farmers on child labor awareness. Finally, we have started the mapping of our supply chain through the Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation System (CLMRS) to document how prevalent the worst forms of child labor are in our supply chain.
Our measured impact
With the support of the International Cocoa Initiative, we have piloted a Child Labor¹ Monitoring and Remediation System (CLMRS) covering two cooperatives and 494 farmers. In those communities monitored, 38 cases of children involved in hazardous child labor were identified in 2016/17. In addition we surveyed 103 farmer groups we directly source from in Côte d’Ivoire. On the basis of this survey, we established that in 2016/17, 3.2 % of the 340 farmer groups we directly source from in Côte d’Ivoire have CLMRS equivalent systems in place. The survey found 209 cases of hazardous child labor. As we are rolling CLMRS out, we expect to see this number grow in the coming years. CLMRS data will help us to better target those communities where child labor awareness-raising and remediation efforts have to be prioritized. As we aim to eradicate child labor from our entire supply chain, not just cocoa, we are creating a heat map to identify those commodities at risk of including child labor in their supply chains. In addition, we are updating our supplier code to incentivize suppliers of non-cocoa ingredients to have systems in place which are equivalent to CLMRS. We expect to see this reflected in our enabling KPI on third-party suppliers as of 2017/18.
¹ According to ILO, not all work done by children should be classified as child labor that is to be targeted for elimination. The term ‘child labor’ is often defined as work that deprives children of their childhood, their potential and their dignity, interferes with their schooling and is harmful to their physical and mental development. Activities such as carrying heavy loads or using chemicals are considered as ‘unacceptable forms of child labor’ because they are physically dangerous to for children.
Number of child labor cases identified and remediated in our supply chain
of the farmer groups we directly source from that have systems in place to prevent, monitor and remediate child labor
% of third party suppliers who have equivalent systems in place
Our commitments to the UN SDGs
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) consist of 17 goals to transform our world. We have selected for each of our targets the corresponding SDG to highlight how Forever Chocolate fits into the global agenda to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all.
The roll-out of CLMRS and equivalent systems across cocoa farmers we directly source from will be our priority in the coming years. Yet, monitoring and remediation alone does not provide a long-term structural solution to the root cause of child labor in the cocoa supply chain: farmer poverty. Poverty alleviation, access to quality education and awareness-raising are the three interlinked elements in the strategy to eradicate child labor. In addition to our strategy to improve cocoa farmer livelihoods, we will use our reach and resources amongst the cocoa growing communities to reinforce and support government programs that support these three pillars, ensuring improved access to quality education and changing existing perceptions on child labor.
Through monitoring, awareness raising and remediation we are working with cocoa farmer communities to tackle the complex issues that stop children attending school and work on cocoa farms.
Bringing education to 65,000 children
This is the story about how our joint project with Kim’s Chocolates is bringing education to 65,000 children in Tanzania.
This is not a feel-good action. It’s an initiative that will make a substantial difference to the farming community.
Fons Maex, CEO, Kim’s Chocolates
Katchilè: traceability in the cocoa supply chain
Katchilè is our geotraceability App which we are currently rolling out in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana. It brings a high level of traceability and also integrates our Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation System. This means we can also map cocoa farming communities that require child labor awareness raising and remediation.
Chocolate pleasure, without the guilt
Our customer Tony's Chocolonely in on a journey towards slave-free chocolate. Watch the clip to see how we are supporting Tony's in making this a reality.
We are a tiny company. But if we can do it, then the big guys can do it as well.
Henk Jan Beltman, Chief Chocolate Officer, Tony's Chocolonely
Birth certificates – and why they can be crucial to avoid child labor
Without a birth certificate, many children in Côte d’Ivoire face barriers to finishing school and risk working on their families’ cocoa farms instead. Making it easier for parents to register their children’s births is just one of the many approaches needed to tackle child labor.