Fifty per cent of the premium goes directly to farmers – the balance to community projects and to support the work of cooperatives
Cargill’s cocoa and chocolate business has made the second of its annual sustainable certified cocoa premium payments which total over U.S. $2.2 million, to 26,500 farmers across 21 cooperatives in Côte d’Ivoire.
The substantial payments mark another step in Cargill’s commitment to build a sustainable cocoa supply chain and support cocoa farmers. Over 50 per cent of the payments go directly to farmers with the remainder used by cooperatives to provide assistance to their members and to build local community facilities. These latest payments follow the first sustainable premiums paid by Cargill to farmers last year.
Farmers are receiving the premium payment for the delivery of 20,000 tonnes of UTZ Certified and Rainforest Alliance cocoa between October 2010 and May 2011. This represents approximately 10 per cent of Cargill’s total bean sourcing in Côte d’Ivoire. The cooperatives obtained certification following participation in Cargill’s farmer training programme for certified cocoa in 500 Farmer Field Schools across the cocoa growing regions.
Kouakou Jacques, president of the Fiédifoué Cooperative explains: “The majority of the premium we receive is used for resources that benefit our community. For example, we have previously used the premium to build schools and a maternity clinic. In this way we ensure that the whole community shares in and benefits from these payments.”
The 21 cooperatives which received the premium were certified in September 2010, through independent third party auditing. The training is an intensive 10 month programme for cooperatives and their members and has been developed by Cargill’s cocoa and chocolate business in partnership with rural development agency Anader.
During the programme farmers are trained in good and safe practices focusing on farming techniques and post-harvest activities such as pruning, plantation renewal and cocoa fermentation methods. In addition the programme also stresses broader social aspects, such as the importance of ensuring children’s education and HIV awareness.
In addition to the 21 cooperatives now certified, 20 others are expected to receive certification before the start of the next crop season, with a further 30 cooperatives set to join the programme in October 2011.
Harold Poelma, Managing Director Cocoa, Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate said: “We are pleased that with our support farmers and local communities in Côte d’Ivoire are benefiting from these premiums. The premiums are a clear indication that farmers are adopting more sustainable practices and that the availability of sustainable beans, and cocoa products, for our customers continues to grow.
“These premiums recognise the hard work undertaken by farmers and prove our commitment to sustainable cocoa production and improving incomes for farmers. We are continuing to work closely with them to reach our target of 100,000 tonnes of certified sustainable cocoa beans from Côte d’Ivoire by 2015.”
As a result of its success in Côte d’Ivoire, Cargill has intensified its farmer training programme in Vietnam, and recently announced the expansion of the programme to Cameroon.
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 all over the world. Our product range includes high quality Gerkens® cocoa powders, chocolate including Wilbur®, Peter’s® and 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.
Cargill is an international producer and marketer of food, agricultural, financial and industrial products and services. Founded in 1865, the privately held company employs 130,000 people in 63 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 http://www.cargill.com/.