US confectioner Hershey has said it will source 100% certified cocoa for its global chocolate product line by 2020.

The commitment, announced today (4 October), will also see the group accelerate its programmes to help eliminate child labour in the cocoa regions of West Africa.

As the largest chocolate manufacturer in North America, Hershey said it believes its purchasing commitment should “significantly” expand the global supply of certified cocoa, particularly from West Africa, which produces around 70% of the world’s cocoa.

“Consistent with Hershey’s values, we are directly addressing the economic and social issues that impact West Africa’s two million cocoa farmers and families,” said J.P. Bilbrey, president and CEO of Hershey Co. “Expanding the use of certified cocoa across our iconic chocolate brands while working with public and private partners, demonstrates Hershey’s responsible sourcing practices. I am confident that we can make a substantial difference in West Africa by 2020.”

Certified cocoa will be verified through independent auditors to assure that it is grown in line with the highest internationally recognised standards for labour, environmental and better farming practices, the company said.

It did not specify which certification scheme it will apply, but pointed to its announcement earlier this year that its Bliss chocolates would be Rainforest Alliance certified by the end of this year.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.