Mondelez International, Nestle , Mars , Ferrero , Haigh’s and Lindt are among a string of chocolate manufacturers that have committed to using sustainably sourced cocoa in their products sold in Australia.

According to The Australian Industry Group , the commitment made by the firms varies in timing in implementation terms “but it is one that all major manufacturers have publicly made”.

The aim of the commitment is to offer long term sustainability to the cocoa growing industry while protecting children in cocoa growing areas from child labour and human trafficking.

Head of the confectionery sector at the Australian Industry Group Tim Piper said: “The largest Australian chocolate manufacturers are committed to a long-term, improved, cocoa growing outlook. Industry is playing a major role and is collaborating with Government, NGOs, communities and families to accelerate our collective efforts to achieve reductions in child labour.

“Some companies such as Nestlé have already moved to totally certified cocoa in their Australian retail chocolate products, while all other majors have committed to either full certification or sustainability and support in the near term.

“It is in the best interests of both the cocoa growers and their communities and the Australian chocolate industry for us to strongly advocate against slavery and to help create a long-term and successful cocoa growing industry,” he added.