Turkey is the biggest hazelnuts producer with around 75% of the global production. There, hazelnut farming is linked to several sustainability issues, especially related to labor conditions and the risk of child labour. UTZ program is supporting Turkish hazelnut farmers to improve agricultural practices and increase their yield, while ensuring good working conditions for the harvesters and working on the elimination of child labor in the orchards. Moreover, since 2013, Barry Callebaut has been part of a Public Private Partnership (PPP), coordinated by the trade association Caobisco and implemented by the International Labor Organization (ILO) with the objective to eliminate the worst forms of child labor in Turkey.
In Spain, our entity La Morella Nuts, the expert in high quality nuts has developed a sustainability program focusing on the challenges related to nuts farming. It consists in three pillars:
- Safeguard water - Most of the nuts grow best in areas with a Mediterranean climate, where water is becoming a scarce resource. Nevertheless, when possible, irrigation is used, because it directly impacts the yield of nuts trees. In 2025, La Morella will source 100% of its nuts from producers either not located in high water stress areas or preserving water by having efficient irrigation systems and irrigating based on plants real needs.
- Foster biodiversity - The last reports about the loss of biodiversity are alarming as it is estimated 1 million animal species are in danger of extinction (IPBES). Bees and pollinators - among other species - are essential for almonds to grow and are in a critical situation. In 2025, La Morella Nuts will source 100% of its nuts from orchards where biodiversity is fostered. This means orchards where producers limit their pesticides usage and preserve agro-ecological infrastructures (such as hedges, isolated trees, cover crop..) serving as a source of food and habitat for local fauna and flora.
- Preserve nut craft - Spain has been an important producer of nuts since centuries. Today, local nut producers face challenges, especially in the production of hazelnuts such as : low profitability, difficult access to land for younger generations, competition from other countries… For La Morella Nuts, it is important to maintain the local tradition of nuts farming and for this reason, Spanish farmers will remain the main partners of La Morella Nuts.