Our commitment to ending deforestation and restoring forests
Our approach for cocoa
In 2017 we signed the Cocoa and Forests Initiative (CFI), a multi-stakeholder initiative dedicated to ending cocoa farming induced deforestation in Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire. It includes a commitment to deliver traceability in our direct cocoa supply chains in these two countries. In line with this commitment, we are geographically locating the farms in our direct cocoa supply chain within 5 kilometers of a protected area and for the warehouses within 25 kilometers of a protected area.
For the deforestation risk assessment which succeeds the mapping, we follow the recommendations made by the CFI and work with analyses relying on satellite data available on Global Forest Watch (GFW) and land use maps1. A hotspot analysis is applied and assigns risk scores to areas, which allows us to target specific interventions to avoid cocoa-driven deforestation. Such activities are for example the promotion of climate-smart cocoa, including agroforestry systems and Community-based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM), such as community-owned restoration plots, to help lift cocoa farmers out of poverty by increasing their productivity and diversifying their income.
Based on the geographical mapping, we are establishing monitoring mechanisms which allow us to detect and address possible deforestation events in our supply chains. For this, we are working with a diverse range of sources and organizations, such as Global Forest Watch, Conservation International and ETH. Through these monitoring activities we aim to ensure deforestation-free supply chains and hold suppliers accountable on their commitment towards stopping deforestation. For example for palm oil, we have managed, together with our suppliers, to establish transparency to mill level for more than 95% of our entire supply.
Finally, we are engaging in industry collaborations and roundtables to promote transparency and to advocate for strong deforestation criteria in the standards we work with. For example, Barry Callebaut signed the Cerrado Manifesto to stop additional farm development in the Brazilian Cerrado grasslands for soy and we are members of the Proterra Foundation and its stakeholder council. We have recently joined the High Carbon Stock Approach Steering Group and for palm, we have actively engaged in the revision of the RSPO principles and criteria, which led to the inclusion of the HCV/HCS Approach.
1 Important to note is that we can only detect tree cover loss on GFW and that this in turn can be used as an approximation of deforestation, and that GFW data only reveals the first occurrence of tree cover loss on a certain area.