The Hershey Company has announced an expansion of its Cocoa For Good programme , committing to 100 percent direct-sourced cocoa in high-risk areas by 2025. 

This programme will include all of its cocoa sourced by its suppliers from Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana. The expanded commitment will make Hershey’s cocoa traceable from the farm to the first purchase point. It will also allow Hershey to know where all of its cocoa from West Africa is grown and how it is produced, providing more transparency for consumers and all stakeholders.

In 2012, Hershey committed to sourcing 100% certified and sustainable cocoa by 2020. The company reached its goal in January 2020. Hershey launched its Cocoa For Good programme in April 2018, furthering its cocoa efforts by 2030 to nourish children, empower youth, build prosperous communities and preserve natural ecosystems.

According to Jeff King, Senior Director of Global Sustainability and Social Impact by purchasing all cocoa as certified and sustainable, the company directly support higher incomes for farmers and improve labor and environmental standards. He added that by transitioning to 100% direct cocoa sourcing for high-risk areas, the company has more transparency into its cocoa supply chain and enables Hershey to provide more support to farmers and scale-up programs. 

Most of the world’s cocoa comes from West Africa, where poverty is the biggest cause of labor issues. Cocoa farmers have challenges such as a lack of local infrastructure, the impacts of climate change on agriculture, and the ability to find workers for small family farms. So to make a transformational change to create a sustainable cocoa supply chain and to overcome the challenges of how cocoa is bought and sold requires engaging and collaborating with stakeholders across sectors such as farmers, government, suppliers, NGOs, and peers.

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