Cargill’s New Specialist Team Strengthens the Drive for Sustainable Cocoa and Chocolate

Jun 29, 2011 | Corporate Member News

Floyd Jebson, +44 1869 353 813, [email protected] 
Wendy Garbutt, +44 1932 861 168, [email protected] 

Cargill’s cocoa and chocolate business has appointed a new specialist team to support the company’s commitment to build a sustainable supply chain for cocoa and chocolate.

The team’s efforts will complement the sustainability work already being undertaken by Cargill and focus on further developing in-country farmer training, as well as strengthening Cargill’s offering to customers to meet the growing demand for certified sustainable cocoa and chocolate products.

The team has been established to manage every step in the sustainable cocoa supply chain from farmer to consumer. In conjunction with colleagues based in Côte d’Ivoire, Vietnam and other origin countries, their work will include expanding Cargill’s sustainability and farmer training programmes, as well as extending activities into other origin countries such as Cameroon, Ghana and Indonesia, where training and certification programmes are being set up.

The Sustainable Cocoa & Chocolate Team is headed by Taco Terheijden, who has worked for Cargill for 11 years and was a member of the start up team for the company’s cocoa processing plant in Tema, Ghana. Commenting on his new role he said:

“I am very excited to be heading up this new team, which demonstrates Cargill’s commitment to sustainability. I believe companies like Cargill have an important role to play in driving forward the sustainability agenda to the benefit of all.”

Working alongside Taco are Matthieu Guémas, Project Manager Sustainable Cocoa, and Saskia Samama, Programme Manager Sustainable Cocoa.

Guémas is the driver behind Cargill’s successful Farmer Field Schools, working in close partnership with NGOs and governments and has worked extensively in Côte d’Ivoire.  He said:

“Working on our farmer training programme means close contact with cocoa farmers, getting to understand their issues and helping them to find solutions.”

Samama’s focus is to connect with customers and provide them with the solutions they need to fulfil their companies’ strategies for sustainable sourcing in the years ahead.

She will also communicate detailed information to customers around the progress of initiatives and the various programmes undertaken by Cargill.

With an increasing demand for certified sustainable cocoa, and a growing market engagement with the development of a sustainable supply chain, Cargill has a long-term commitment to sustainability. The company sees an important partnership role in this for their customers, as partnerships drive mutual growth, benefitting not only the cocoa farmers but also the consumer.

About Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate:

Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate offers the food industry a wide range of both standard and customised cocoa and chocolate ingredients to be used in delicious bakery, confectionery, and dairy applications.

As a leading provider of high quality chocolate and cocoa offerings across Europe and all over the world, the company’s extensive product range includes premium Gerkens® cocoa powders, chocolate, including Wilbur®, Peter’s®, Veliche® coatings, fillings, cocoa liquors and cocoa butters. With years of experience in technical food expertise Cargill supports its customers in new recipes and new product development.

Our facilities in Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Côte d’Ivoire, France, Germany, Ghana, the Netherlands, UK and the USA are fully dedicated to produce in accordance with the highest food safety standards.

To secure a good quality and sustainable supply of cocoa beans we have our own cocoa bean sourcing operations for buying, handling and/or exporting of cocoa beans in Brazil, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Indonesia and Vietnam. Presence in all the leading producing countries allows Cargill to oversee the supply chain from beans at origin to cocoa and chocolate products on our customers’ doorstep. In addition, extensive market research and analysis proves to be a source of valuable information to our customers.

For more information visit: for EMEA and for North America 

About Cargill:

Cargill is an international producer and marketer of food, agricultural, financial and industrial products and services. Founded in 1865, the privately held company employs 131,000 people in 66 countries.

Cargill helps customers succeed through collaboration and innovation, and is committed to applying its global knowledge and experience to help meet economic, environmental and social challenges wherever it does business. For more information, visit 

About UTZ Certified Good Inside

UTZ Certified Good Inside is a sustainability program dedicated to creating an open and transparent marketplace for agricultural products. UTZ Certified has developed sustainability models for the production of cocoa, coffee and tea, and offers traceability services for palm oil. UTZ Certified’s vision is to achieve sustainable agricultural supply chains in which farmers are trained to be professionals. The industry takes responsibility by demanding and sourcing sustainably grown products and consumers buy products that meet their standard for social and environmental responsibility.

In 2007, Cargill, Ecom Agroindustrial, Heinz Benelux, Mars, Nestlé, Royal Ahold, Solidaridad, Oxfam Novib, WWF and UTZ CERTIFIED founded the Good Inside cocoa program to ensure good agricultural, environmental and social practice in cocoa production. The first UTZ Certified cocoa and chocolate products are now available in the market. For more information visit:

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